In 2008, Keith Knuth suffered a traumatic brain injury in a car accident during a trip in northern Michigan. Once he could withstand therapy, Knuth was sent to the Brain Injury Program at Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital for a month of inpatient rehabilitation. During this time, he re-learned how to talk, eat and perform many of the activities of daily living.
“Mary Free Bed was awesome,” says Knuth. “You could feel that the people actually cared and you didn’t feel like just another patient.”
A few years later, it was apparent that Knuth needed more specialized help. He found himself back at Mary Free Bed through the Home and Community Services (HCS) Program. Keith worked with therapists once a week to refine his motor skills and get stronger. He believes that he could have never done it without the help of the HCS therapists.
“They just made me feel like a real person in my home. I have made unbelievable gains. I was walking 200 feet in, like, 20 minutes before, and now I walk 600 feet in about half that time.”
Knuth also has improved his strength and endurance so he can use his arm bicycle around his home and he has gained more strength in both his upper and lower extremities.
Thanks to the help he received from HCS, Knuth often uses his walker instead of his wheelchair. During a recent vacation, he was able to leave his wheelchair in the van and walk into restaurants using his walker.
Knuth wants to tell anyone else in his situation, “Work hard and you can do what you need to do. If someone tells you that you can’t, you can.” He continues, “Home and Community Services really helped me gain greater independence.”