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New pink helmet elicits lots of smiles [Photo Gallery]

Violet Pratt is a spunky 4-year-old. With big brown eyes and a wide smile, she twirls and laughs as she waits with her family in an Orthotics & Prosthetics examination room at Mary Free Bed. On this May afternoon, Violet is here to receive a helmet – “a pink one,” she tells Kim Nequist, the…
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One-year-old girl defies the odds in outpatient therapy

At Mary Free Bed, we’re daily witnesses to our patients’ determination, grit and strength. This is particularly true of our youngest (and most vulnerable) patients. Aubry Maronek, who recently celebrated her first birthday, embodies this spirit of hope and resolve. After being diagnosed with hemimegalencephaly — a rare neurological condition in which one half of the brain is…
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A vintage look at kids of courage

From the Grand Rapids Press – Sunday, April 12, 2015 CLICK the image to open a larger version in a new window. For more Mary Free Bed historical photos go to: bit.ly/maryfreebed

Tearra Garth – A Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Story

Editor’s note: As part of our holiday campaign, Mary Free Bed is asking former patients to tell us about their rehabilitation experience. What follows is one of those stories. Mary Free Bed patient, Tearra Garth, has had quite a journey these past few weeks and is very excited about her future… Listen as Kent Riddle,…
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Devon Goebel: A Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital Story

Editor’s note: As part of our holiday campaign, Mary Free Bed is asking former patients to tell us about their rehabilitation experience. What follows is one of those stories. Robin Bilotti’s Story: “I think I will end up being myself.” This was the prophetic note that my 17-year-old daughter, Devon Goebel, wrote when she was…
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Young Jack Stoner doesn’t let cerebral palsy keep him down

Nine-year-old Jack Stoner smiles a lot these days. He’s often setting aside his wheeled walker in favor of crutches and even endeavoring to take a few steps without the aid of either. “My toes are forward. It’s easier to walk and I can go faster,” he says. In early October, Jack underwent a selective dorsal…
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Melisa Davis Moore – A Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Story

Editor’s note: As part of our holiday campaign, Mary Free Bed is asking former patients to tell us about their rehabilitation experience. What follows is one of those stories. My son, Gabriel, experienced a traumatic brain injury due to a car accident on Aug. 16, 2001. He was 4 at the time. Gabriel was airlifted…
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Mom and Son Receive Support from the Mary Free Bed Feeding Clinic

When Clare Griswold watched her newborn son, Desmond, sleep, she noticed his body would twitch. The twitching would wake him up, which led to even less sleep — for both of them. At two months old, Desmond was evaluated by a doctor and diagnosed with benign neonatal sleep myoclonus – a sleep disorder common among…
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Family learns what life is like with Arthrogryposis

“Following the earthquake in Haiti in 2010, my heart knew we needed to go. Not to photograph, though I did do a little of that, but to restore what was broken and give hope where there was none. We found ourselves in a mountainside orphanage above Port-au-Prince less than three months following the earthquake. Little…
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