May 10, 2019
Dr. Margaret Mackinnon, Homewood Research Inst.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Margaret Mackinnon became interested in post-traumatic stress disorder in the most terrifying way. In August of 2001, McKinnon, at the time a post-doctoral student, left Toronto on Air Transat Flight 236 to enjoy her honeymoon in Portugal. But she and 305 other people on the plane almost didn’t make it when the plane ran out of fuel over the Atlantic Ocean due to a leak in one of the engines. Both engines ended up quitting and only the remarkable work by the pilot saved those on board. The pilot was able to glide the plane for 18 minutes before performing a miraculous landing on a small island air base. Everyone survived. This experience led Margaret into focusing on PTSD research. She is now the Homewood Research Chair in Mental Health and Trauma and an associate professor at McMaster University.