“Let Me Breathe” – The Backstory

PHA Canada Toronto ChapterThree words capture the experience of every pulmonary hypertension patient – “let me breathe,” and now this expressive phrase has become the title and theme of a new music video on YouTube. With your help in spreading the song virally, we can convey to even more people the impact of PH.

Product of Canada

Canadian composer J. Paul Adams, uncle of Toronto PH patient Emily Dolan, composed and performed “Let Me Breathe” to raise awareness of PH.  A version of it, sung with a choir of Canadian PH patients and supporters, has been posted on the Internet since late November, receiving more than 1,300 views. Share the song with others

Moved by the spirit and support he noticed at a meeting of the PHA Canada Toronto Chapter, Paul wrote the music and lyrics within a week. Paul first performed the song at PHA Canada’s September 2009 National PH Conference in Montreal, receiving an enthusiastic response. His next vision became the online video with PH patients and friends singing with him. 

The music video "premiered" at the Annual Vegas PH fundraiser hosted by the PHA Canada Toronto Chapter on November 5, 2011. During the 2011 National PH Awareness Month Campaign, “Let Me Breathe” was also featured at an awareness event on Parliament Hill, the legislative heart of Canada in Ontario.  

Strength Amid Struggle

Paul had learned about the struggle with pulmonary hypertension from his niece, who started having PH symptoms at nine years old but was not diagnosed until age 27. In declining health, she left advanced university studies in Halifax to move back to her family in Toronto.

Relatives, friends and eventually the newly formed PHA Canada Toronto Chapter gave Emily the support she needed. Ruth Dolan, Emily’s mother, says “We joined the Toronto PH Support Group, where so much of our stress and fear dissipated, and we found support and remarkable friends, as time has gone on.”

Please join Paul, Emily and other members of the PH community in making this video go viral. Share it with your friends, family, supporters…anyone who will listen. Become engaged in sharing through music the challenge and the hope felt by people with pulmonary hypertension.

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The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) awarded PHA the Abbey S. Meyers Leadership Award in 2012 for outstanding service to PHA members in advocacy, education and other key areas.