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With new prosthesis and encouragement from her Mary Free Bed team, Dottie Kuklewski ‘just keeps going’

Dottie Kuklewski developed an infection that forced doctors to amputate her leg. She went to Mary Free Bed for rehabilitation and spent several weeks in the inpatient Amputee Program. Since then, Dottie used a wheelchair exclusively for mobility, hesitant to try a prosthesis. About two years later, Dottie needed a new shrinker for her residual limb….
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Wheelchair & Adaptive Sports motivates 10-year-old Ginessa to compete

Ginessa Aguirre is a spunky 10-year-old with a long brown ponytail who likes making slime, watching YouTube and cuddling with her cat, Smokey. She also likes cooking and baking with her mom, Nora. But what Ginessa likes most is playing basketball. “I like to steal the ball,” she said. See? Spunky. Ginessa plays for the…
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Rehabilitation, hard work help Dario overcome debilitating pain

In 2015, Dario Cook was diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis, a form of arthritis that affects the spine and can lead to severe, chronic pain. That was nearly eight years after he first experienced symptoms, collapsing in pain while walking to work. He initially was diagnosed with a hip strain, but the pain never really went…
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Mary Free Bed graduate Bobby Decair helps patients get in Super Bowl spirit

Bobby Decair has constantly reminded himself to not quit since Jan. 25, 2016 – his first day at Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital. Just days earlier, Bobby sustained a traumatic spinal cord injury when his truck slid on black ice and flipped multiple times. “I just held on,” said Bobby, recalling the accident. He said…
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Dave loses 100 pounds, improves health with Weight Management Program

Mary Free Bed’s mission is to restore hope and freedom through rehabilitation. Our programs and services are an extension of that mission. For Dave Nichols, a graduate of the Mary Free Bed Weight Management Program, hope and freedom came by way of improving his wellness. In this interview, Dave explains how the medically based program…
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Kalamazoo bus driver who lost leg in crash ‘grateful to still be here’

La Shon Diallo was working overtime at her long-time job as a Kalamazoo Metro Transit bus driver to earn extra money for a new roof on her home. She remembers the traffic light turning green. Then she remembers waking up in the hospital. La Shon, 47, was seriously injured when a suspected drunken driver traveling…
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Road to recovery comes ‘full circle’ for Kalamazoo bike crash survivor

It’s been nearly a year since Paul Gobble graduated from Mary Free Bed. A survivor of the June 7, 2016 bicycle collision in Kalamazoo County that killed five others, Paul has been recovering from a head injury, multiple spinal cord injuries and a fractured fibula. “When I left Mary Free Bed, I was wearing three…
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