Dear family, friends and supporters,
On Wednesday February 8th 2006, I left work early to check myself into the emergency room at Virtua Memorial Hospital in Mt. Holly, NJ. I had this pounding, ongoing headache that had been lingering for a few days. Other things were going on, too - my ulcerative colitis was acting up and I had been on antibiotics for a nasty superbug infection since late January.
Two days later, I found myself being transported to Thomas Jefferson University Hospital (TJUH) in Philadelphia. The ER doctors found a clot in my brain and I had suffered a major stroke. My brain was hemorrhaging and I needed surgery. The next morning I underwent the procedure that saved my life. Dr. Sharan, a bright 35 year old Neurosurgeon and his team is responsible for that.
The stroke paralyzed my dominant right side. I couldn’t walk and I couldn’t talk. Because of my visit to the ER, I was alive. After nine months of physical, occupational and speech rehab and another surgery I regained most of my cognitive function and returned to work. Seven years later, I have recovered nearly all my abilities. Only 10% of stroke survivors do.
On March 17, I ran my first distance race - the New York City Half Marathon. I set a goal of under 2:00. My finish time of 1:45:24 put me in the top 20% of all finishers and the top third for my age group.
As part of the Stroke Challenge Team I am raising funds to promote awareness about stroke. Here are some facts that you might not know regarding stroke. It is the fourth-leading cause of death in the United States and every four minutes, someone will die from one. Additionally, approximately 795,000 strokes will occur this year, one every 40 seconds. Stroke is also the leading cause of adult disability in the country. There are 7 million stroke survivors in the United States and I am one of them.
As part of the team, I set a goal of $4,000. I ONLY have $200 more to raise AND the deadline has been EXTENDED so please share this page and make a donation if you can as I am committed to the difference if I'm unable to do so.
I participated in the Strides for Stroke 5k on June 9th as part of Team Jefferson and finished 21st overall and 5th in my age group. CBS Philly radio interviewed me and I made it on the ABC news at noon, well at least the start of the race was broadcasted! I created a slideshow that I presented at TJUH and I'm going to start presenting at other support groups in the region. Hopefully it will lead to more of a motivational type speaking gig down the line.
With sincere gratitude, Dave