Patient Stories

"I was on life support… and now I'm hitting golf balls. I love life. I love living!"

Mark Huff
Stroke Patient

Late one afternoon on his way home from work, Mark Huff suffered a massive stroke. He was placed on life support and his wife was told that if he survived, he would have less than a 20% chance of ever regaining brain function. His family looked for a sign – any sign – that would offer them some hope.

Nine days later, Mark moved his arm. Maybe there was a chance. When he arrived at Kessler's Center for Stroke Rehabilitation, the right side of his body was paralyzed and his speech, swallowing, mobility and cognition were severely impaired. He had great difficulty communicating and couldn't perform the simplest of tasks. But Mark defied the odds.

Shortly after ten weeks of intensive rehabilitation, Mark walked down the aisle at his brother's wedding, and even danced.

"They call me a 'miracle.' I wasn't supposed to live, but I wasn't ready to give up. I've never worked harder… I had the right people – the best people – working with me and I just had to keep trying."

Mark continued to progress through months of outpatient therapy and participation in Kessler's Cognitive Rehabilitation Program. And he continued to reach new milestones, including playing golf again. "It's been hard. It's been emotional. I've struggled with my loss of independence. But I've learned that when you do get a second chance in life, you have to make the most of it."

Learn more about Kessler's Stroke Rehabilitation Program.