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News > Scots Granddad Kicks Off World Tour to Show there is Life After Stroke

Scots Granddad Kicks Off World Tour to Show there is Life After Stroke

Gary Greenan and wife Anne climbing Mount Etna

Gary Greenan, from Broxburn in West Lothian, had two mini strokes followed by two major strokes leaving him with aphasia in 2021.

The 61-year-old received support from Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland in his recovery and he has set out to prove you can live a full life after a stroke after heading on a round-the-world tour with his wife Anne.

Gary spoke of his recovery battle as part of Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland’s Christmas Appeal.  As part of the appeal, CHSS supporters were invited to share their well-wishes with Gary and his family. As a result, he was inundated with cards and plans to take those messages with him on his travels.

He said: “All the lovely cards that were sent after I took part in the Christmas appeal we read and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.

“I know the sentiment behind them was these should don next year’s Christmas tree, but we don’t know for certain where we will be at Christmas.

“But we have a fairly good idea that we will probably be in Sydney.

“All of these cards you’ve sent with all the best wishes for Anne and I – every single one – is going to have a place on the plane next to us.

“We’ve put them in a case, and they will sit with me and Anne on our journey. Even if there’s not a tree they will still be with us in Sydney at Christmas this year.

“Thank you for all the support you’ve given me and all I can say is I hope we have a bon voyage!”

So far Gary and Anne have travelled around Italy and earlier this week the duo toured Sicily and climbed Mount Etna.

Gary said: “We were doing it in slow stages. We were 2,200 metres up and the air was a little bit thin and breathing was a little bit difficult but we got there.”

Road to recovery

Gary had a heart attack, two mini strokes and two full strokes which has left him with weakness on his left-hand side and difficulty speaking but has been supported in his recovery by Scotland’s largest health charity, Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland.

He said: “I’m a husband, a dad and a grandad, and now a stroke survivor. But I’m still Gary and I’m fighting to find the way back to ‘me’ again. Every day is a challenge because every day I meet the new version of me.

“There’s a lot of the old Gary in me. We both believe life isn’t a dress rehearsal.

“Thanks to the support I’ve had from Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland, the new Gary is learning to live again and take advantage of new opportunities – but with limitations the old me never had to worry about.”

To keep up to date on Gary’s Life After Stroke World Trip please go to Life After Stroke World trip | Instagram, Facebook | Linktree.

Find out more about fundraising for Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland.

If you’re living with the effects of a chest, heart or stroke condition or Long Covid and looking for advice and information, please contact Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland’s Advice Line on 0808 801 0899. You can also text NURSE to 66777 or email

People are leaving hospital feeling scared and alone. You can change that.

Your donation can help people do more than just survive – you can help them really live.


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