Recognizing The Effects of Emotional Stress

About Eric Palmer Memorial Foundation


How we achieve our vision:

  • we bring studies linking emotional stress and physical health into mainstream media;
  • we facilitate workshops for children suffering from anxiety and emotional stress;
  • we educate parents to identify anxiety and stress in their children;
  • we work with the school system to offer supports.



Eric Palmer Memorial Foundation was created following his death at age 29. Eric was an engaging young man who suffered the debilitating effects of Acute Ulcerative Colitis for six years.  In 2015, he endured three major surgeries to remove and reconstruct his colon.

Prior to Eric’s death he was diagnosed with Sclerosing Cholangitis, an additional autoimmune disease, which can occur in approximately 4% of people with Acute Ulcerative Colitis. The treatment for Sclerosing Cholangitis is liver transplantation. Eric chose not to continue with a life that was defined by physical illness, and ended his own life February 17, 2016. As a child Eric was extremely physically healthy, and had a great love of the outdoors and especially sailing. Eric possessed a natural shyness, which at times manifested itself as anxiety.

There is a growing body of evidence which associates anxiety and emotional stress with physical illnesses, specifically autoimmune diseases. While not necessarily a “cause” of Eric’s physical health issues, anxiety and stress most definitely exacerbated his symptoms. In the early 1990’s the school systems in Canada did little to identify or support children with anxiety or emotional stress, and the general thinking of the day was “they’ll outgrow it”.

We at the Eric Foundation believe that if anxiety and emotional stress is addressed at a younger age, skills can be developed to avoid further health complications, leading the way to a happier, healthier life, a “smoother sailing”.


Eric Palmer Memorial Foundation is a Charitable Organization under the Income Tax Act (77462 7669 RR0001) and a Registered Society in the Province of British Columbia (S0065325), with an elected volunteer Board of Directors.  The Eric Foundation has a constitution and a set of by-laws to which we adhere.


 Janice Hansen     (Lawyer)
Alanna Graham
Dr. Thomas Harrison (PhD Neuroscientist)
Dr. Carla Cashin ND (Naturopath)
Karen Palmer