Press release -
Inspiring stroke survivor receive regional recognition
A Fobbing stroke survivor has been awarded a Highly Commended Life After Stroke certificate from the Stroke Association.
John Mealand, 68, had a major stroke in 1998 which left him with left side paralysis, and in a wheelchair. John was forced to leave his job as an electronics engineer, and was cared for by his wife as he worked on his rehabilitation.
After a lot of dedication and determination and with the support from his wife and family, John was beginning to make good progress in his rehabilitation. But unfortunately the roles then reversed, as John’s wife, Pamela, had a devastating stroke just three years after John’s.
John became a full time carer for Pam as she needed twenty four hour support. Pam sadly passed away five years after her stroke.
John now spends a lot of time volunteering with a number of organisations including the Stroke Association to support the improvement in stroke services from the perspective of a stroke survivor. John said, "Stroke does have a huge impact on the stroke survivor their family. When I had my stroke I felt I'd lost everything but I knew I couldn't let my stroke stop me from being me. My stroke followed by my wife’s stroke, turned our worlds upside down, but I worked really hard to get our lives back on track. I want stroke survivors to know that there is a life after stroke and together we can conquer stroke!"
Bridget Bell, Conference Manager from the Stroke Association’s UK Stroke Forum, works closely with John and nominated him for the Carer award. Bridget said: “Even when the odds were against him, John has shown that with a fighting spirit and a positive attitude you can achieve anything. John became his wife’s full time carer when she needed twenty four hour support, and John was determined to be there to give that support. There is no underestimating what a very difficult and traumatic time it was for both of them, but John’s determination and courage meant he was able to give his wife the care and support she needed and made her life as comfortable as possible.”
“I believe that John deserves acknowledgement for his remarkable recovery and the way in which he continues to deal with the effects of his stroke. His story will hopefully inspire others.”
John received his Highly Commended certificate from Sara Betsworth. The presentation took place at the Great Barton Village Hall in Bury St Edmunds on Friday 7 November.
Sara Betsworth, Regional Head of Operations for the Stroke Association in the East of England, continued: “A stroke happens in an instant and often changes lives forever. We were thrilled that so many of our community in the East of England were nominated to receive a Life After Stroke Award. Our regional event highlights the tremendous courage people have shown in rebuilding their lives after a stroke, or in helping others to do the same.”
The Stroke Association’s Life After Stroke Awards recognise the courage shown by stroke survivors and carers as well as the great work and commitment shown by health professionals, groups and supporter organisations. For more information visit www.stroke.org.uk/LifeAfterStrokeAwards
A stroke is a brain attack which happens when the blood supply to the brain is cut off, caused by a clot or bleeding in the brain. There are around 152,000 strokes in the UK every year and it is the leading cause of severe adult disability. There are over 1.2 million people in the UK living with the effects of stroke.
Stroke Association is a charity. We believe in life after stroke and together we can conquer stroke. We work directly with stroke survivors and their families and carers, with health and social care professionals and with scientists and researchers. We campaign to improve stroke care and support people to make the best recovery they can. We fund research to develop new treatments and ways of preventing stroke. The Stroke Helpline (0303 303 3100) provides information and support on stroke. More information can be found at www.stroke.org.uk