Rick with Storm

Rick in wheelchair


Mobility Scooter

Quiet Angels

My husband



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Rick has overcome much hardship and adversity in his life

On Easter Sunday, 1994 he tore his vertebral artery cutting off the blood to his brain causing him to have a VERY severe brain injury that left his entire right side permanently impaired. On a scale of 1-10 we were told, “He was an eleven, nearly died, was lucky to be alive, would never be the same and that our dog Capone probably saved his life.”

Upon losing his ability walk and to fluently communicate he became reclusive. Our so called friends avoided us like the plague. (It seemed that no-one we knew wanted to be associated with us since his injury) It wasn't always pretty! He missed being around others, took it very hard and sank into deep denial and depression. He began taking antidepressants and drinking heavily. He would sit in a stupor wallowing in pride and self pity for hours.

I don't judge him too harshly! He was severely injured, faced death, experienced helplessness, loneliness, anxiety, frustration, confined to a house / wheelchair, lost everything that he had worked for including respect, independence, hopes and dreams, had his drivers license taken away, and his life revolved around doctors, insurance companies and he depended on me and his disability income.

I truly believe that Rick has changed for the better!

Many people would have just given up. But Rick isn't wired that way! With the help of myself, his doctors/therapists, dogs and the Lord it took years, but he made it! He worked lo-o-ong and hard to recover enough to regain a place as a useful member of society!

He has greatly improved over the last 20+ yrs both mentally and physically. To look at him, you'd think that he was fine.  However, He still has numerous problems: He walks with a cane, tires easily, needs his tricycle, mobility scooter or car to get around. He has memory lapses, poor judgment and mood swings especially when he gets tired, overwhelmed, in pain and after taking pain medication. (He cannot sit or stand for any length of time without experiencing a considerable amount of pain.)

Rick isn't one to just lay around. Immediately after reaching retirement age, being released from disability, receiving social security, and allowed to seek employment he began looking for a way to help out. (I kept telling him that he should stay home and enjoy his senior years; but didn't want that)

Lesson Learned

July 27, 2016 - With help from the Illinois Department of Rehabilitation and SPARC he got a job as a p/t Greeter at Walmart to earn income while making new friends and rekindle friendships that he never could by sitting at home. (Sooner or later, just about everyone in our vicinity walks through those doors.) However, between problems due to age, pain from sitting / standing for extended periods, and medications, I believed that his employment would more than likely be temporary. (The more he worked, the more he hurt.) It's difficult to continually appear cheerful when you hurt or are spaced out on pain medication.

February 2, 2017 – Rick resigned. He did his best to hang on one day at a time but it wasn't working out. (I still can't believe that he lasted that long.)  Now he feels a debt of gratitude to Walmart for giving him a chance when no one else would. 

Being grateful to Walmart for the opportunity he includes their promotions on our TrueColorsMall.us website. Things are working better than we could have ever imagined.  

We're rewarded a fee for online referrals from home and he's back to doing things that he enjoys like milling around the house, copying and pasting on our websites and/or baby sit dogs for our neighbors.  He's content knowing that he tried.

Now he's back to feeding the birds and the squirrels, then sits in the back yard watching the dogs, birds, squirrels, butterflies... For exercise he rides his tricycle around doing drop-in-visits and talking the few long time neighbors he has left.

Rick has a great attitude and truly appreciates life! However he misses family, friends, previous co-workers and pets that have came and gone through the years. Especially Capone & Jake.



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