Nova Scotia

Allan Rowe, Liberal MLA, in intensive care after aneurysm

A Nova Scotia Liberal backbencher who has been in hospital for almost three weeks is more seriously ill than originally suggested by his caucus.

Rowe collapsed outside his Dartmouth home on Feb. 20 while shovelling snow

Dartmouth South MLA Allan Rowe and his wife Yvonne during an anniversary dinner in 2014. (Facebook)

A Nova Scotia Liberal backbencher who has been in hospital for almost three weeks is more seriously ill than originally suggested by his caucus.

Sources tell CBC News that Allan Rowe, the MLA for Dartmouth South, suffered a ruptured aneurysm and remains in intensive care. His caucus colleagues have shared his duties while he remains in hospital.

Those colleagues, the premier's office and caucus staff have been tight-lipped about Rowe's condition.

The 59-year-old TV host turned politician has been up front about his health in the past. Rowe's online biography includes details of not only his health, but that of his wife and one of his two grandchildren.

"Yvonne and I, and our grandson as well, have battled a few health issues in recent years. Yvonne being diagnosed with breast cancer and diabetes, myself with prostate cancer and our grandson with epilepsy," the bio reads.

No one knew Rowe had a brain aneurysm until he collapsed outside his Dartmouth home on Feb. 20. He had been shovelling snow.

He was rushed to the Dartmouth General Hospital by ambulance, where he remains under constant care.

On the Sunday following his collapse, the Liberal caucus office issued a four-line news release saying he was recovering from a medical procedure and was expected to return to his duties when his health allowed.

Spring session starts March 26

Premier Stephen McNeil said there's no indication when that might be.

"That’s between his medical team, him and they'll indicate when he's able to do that," McNeil said Wednesday.

The spring sitting of the legislature starts March 26.

Rowe's duties as caucus whip have been reassigned to fellow backbencher Brendan Maguire.

Meantime, McNeil is wishing his caucus colleague well.

"I'm wishing and praying for him to have good health," McNeil told CBC News. "Allan is in every sense of the word a true gentleman and I'm looking forward to him getting back to work and getting back to good health."

Rowe worked as a roughneck on the ill-fated drill rig Ocean Ranger, before starting his career in news.

"One of my first tasks was to report on the sinking of the Ocean Ranger with all hands lost, many of whom were close friends of mine," states his website.

Most people still recognize him as the evening anchor on Global Television's local supperhour newscast. He retired from journalism in the summer of 2012 and was first elected to the Nova Scotia legislature in the 2013 general election.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jean Laroche

Reporter

Jean Laroche has been a CBC reporter for 32 years. He's been covering Nova Scotia politics since 1995 and has been at Province House longer than any sitting member.

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