Michel Brazeau was just 19 years old when he faced his first healthcare challenge. After a horrific motorcycle accident, he spent four months at The Ottawa Hospital where healthcare professionals worked to save his leg.  

“Because of the extent of my injuries and the number of surgeries I required, the doctors and nurses were like a lifeline for me,” says Michel. “They listened, answered all my questions, and went above and beyond countless times.” As a result of that accident, he is forever grateful for the care he received. 

In 1992, Michel married Laurie, and just one year later — while they were still just newlyweds — he had reason to once again be grateful for the care at The Ottawa Hospital after Laurie was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. She successfully underwent treatment and credits her recovery to her exceptional care team. 

In a tragic coincidence, Michel, now a senior partner at Deloitte Canada, was recently also diagnosed with thyroid cancer, which has progressed aggressively. But the Brazeaus are turning adversity into action.  

Earlier this summer, Michel’s colleagues at Deloitte Ottawa banded together to donate $1 million to The Ottawa Hospital’s Campaign to Create Tomorrow to support the construction of the new hospital campus on Carling Avenue. 

Laurie and Michel Brazeau

Now Michel and Laurie are making a generous gift of their own and personally offering to triple each Giving Tuesday donation on November 28, up to $100,000. 

Michel and Laurie’s three children

“This donation means a lot to us and it’s deeply personal,” says Laurie. “We want to be good role models for our three children and show them what it means to meaningfully contribute to your community. We want them to look back and be proud of the impact we left behind as a family.” 

Michel is facing the future with bravery, humour, and most of all the support of his family. His hope is that their healthcare journey will inspire others to contribute to the campaign as well. 

“This hospital will be for everyone — we will all need the care of The Ottawa Hospital at some point. And the more innovative the facility the better the care and the better the talent it will attract,” says Michel. “We want to do what we can to ensure our kids and their kids have the very best healthcare.”  

Thank you, Michel and Laurie, for sharing your inspiring story and for your generous Giving Tuesday match gift.  

The Ottawa Hospital is a leading academic health, research, and learning hospital proudly affiliated with the University of Ottawa.