The year was 1976 when a hockey buddy approached Don Ed about becoming partners in a business to sell and rent wheelchairs in Ottawa. The home health aid industry was in its infancy, Don had a full time job, and his wife Judi was a full time mother of two. Despite the obstacles, they founded Conval-Aid that year, operating out of little more than a small office on Boyd Avenue. “We had one desk, one filing cabinet, and one phone,” says Judi. The company grew in reputation and grew in size. By 1980, they had a new location on Carling and Bronson. Thanks to the visibility of the address and the growth of the industry, the business took off.
In 1985, the Eds became sole owners of Conval-Aid. Over the years, Conval-Aid expanded into new areas. In 1994, Don co-founded HealthCraft Products Inc., which manufactures innovative health care products, all of which are available at Conval-Aid.
In the 1990’s, the Eds partnered with Don Johnston and Liftability Inc. was born, serving customers requiring wheelchair vehicle adaptation, hand controls, and lifts.
As Conval-Aid grew, so did Don and Judi’s kids, Merrill and Stuart. They started working part-time in the business in high school, then full time after they completed their post secondary education. Merrill and Stuart Ed have now taken over the company reins.
The story of Conval-Aid spans almost four decades and two generations. From a one-person endeavour part-time, the company has grown to employ a team of 22 here in Ottawa. From humble beginnings operating out of an old clunker and a small office, Conval-Aid now boasts a custom-designed showroom and an impressive inventory of home health aids and wheelchairs. Today, Conval-Aid is located at 2600 Lancaster Road (across the road from the Minto Arena), with customers throughout Ottawa and the surrounding areas. Conval-Aid is a family-oriented business, known for their personal care and expert advice.