In 2004, a family friend stopped by and found Eddie lying face down on his kitchen floor after suffering a stroke. Only 51, Eddie was in a coma two days before he responded to a therapist’s questions by squeezing her hand. To this day, Eddie continues to be best friends with this therapist. He spent two months in the hospital for therapy and then moved to a nursing home to continue his recovery.
At first two people were needed to help Eddie sit up, and a mechanical lift was used for transfers. In 2007, Eddie’s condition improved so much that he could be discharged to an assisted living facility. The day Eddie moved to his new home there was a snow storm. Yet, he was so determined to live more independently that he asked to be pulled in a sled to his new home!
As a result of his stroke, Eddie has paralysis on his left side and is unable to speak. However, he is able to do a lot for himself. He can walk independently with a quad cane and can transfer himself with the use of supports. Eddie uses some sign language with his right hand and also communicates by writing on paper. He uses e-mail to communicate daily with his best friend and with his care manager from Lakeland Care. Although change is hard for Eddie, he’s even exploring using an IPAD to communicate, since writing is difficult at times.
Eddie worked in radio broadcasting for 24 years, but jokingly says that there’s no demand for mute announcers. Eddie was always very talented musically, playing guitar and starting bands over the years.
Music continues to be a big part of Eddie’s life as he listens to many different types of music most of the day.
Eddie likes to keep his mind challenged, so he takes online courses through Universal Class. Eddie has completed courses in meteorology fundamentals, astronomy, cosmology and UFOs. He enjoys reading on his Kindle; his favorite books are scientific fiction, mystery and crime novels.
Eddie believes his stroke brought him closer to God. When asked if he had words of advice to anybody going through difficult times, Eddie said: “Stay strong, never give up, never surrender, keep faith in God and keep going.”