The Jim Thorpe Inpatient Rehabilitation Center at Comanche County Memorial Hospital offers occupational, physical and speech therapy. Therapists use the Easy Street to help patients return back to daily activities.

Wilson Ponce is 31, and has already suffered two strokes in his lifetime. Just a few months ago while at work, Ponce felt his arm and leg go numb.

“My arm just felt like it was asleep. I couldn’t move it,” Ponce said. “And then I tried to move, and my leg wouldn’t move either. So my boss took me to the hospital.”

Less than 2 weeks later, he experienced another stroke. That’s when he found out that he has a condition that was causing it.

“They went through my throat and they took a picture of the back of my heart and they noticed the gap in the back of my heart,” Ponce said. “They said everybody has it when they’re a baby, but it closes up. But mine never did.”

His doctors admitted him into inpatient rehabilitation. Ponce lives in Carnegie, and chose to come to the Jim Thorpe Inpatient Rehabilitation Center at CCMH because it was close to home.

“They do a good job. I had a few people that I know from Carnegie that have been here. And they’re doing real good,” Ponce said. “I want to be there too. I want to be walking again and doing everything I used to.”

Jennifer Ninman is an inpatient physical therapist, and worked with Ponce when he came to the rehab center. She sets a care plan for the patients to help them get to where they want to be. For Ponce, he wanted to walk again, to get back to doing things with his family.

“We used easy street. We use it as a facilitator to help patient access the community and their homes. There’s a curb. There’s a car, so we can practice getting in and out of a car,” Ninman said.

Ninman said when Ponce first came to them, he could only take a few steps.

“Now he’s walking by himself, and able to access the community,” Ninman said. “He told me that he’s able to go eat with his family, go to his sons football games, enjoy time with his daughter.”

Ponce said he is thankful for the care he has received and hopes to get back to working again soon.

“They’ve been great people. They help you with everything you need,” Ponce said. “They push you and try to get you going and get you out of here. So you can start living your normal life.”

The annual Jim Thorpe Inpatient Rehab Reunion is happening Thursday, October 11th, at the rehab center at 5:30pm. All former and current patients are invited to attend.