SURVIVOR STORIES  |  Meet the faces of young stroke.

Michael Williams

Stroke at 51
“All my plans have changed or cancelled due to my stroke… get dizzy all the time, speech is off… I can’t walk straight for fear of falling.  I know my wife is afraid.” 

Ralph Preston

Stroke at 58
“Anyone who thinks I’ve fully recovered hasn’t seen me carry 2 full glasses, fold laundry, tie a tie, peel shrimp or wrestle with the dreaded zip-lock bag.”

Dorothy Connor

TIA at 38 & stroke at 42
“I thought it was a terrible migraine headache.  It felt like someone hit me with a baseball bat in the back of my head. I never thought of it as being a stroke.  I did not imagine having a stroke occurring at my age.”  

Larry White

Stroke at 51
“I broke all the rules.  I went home to get something to eat, then drove myself to the hospital… everything the doc asked me not to do!  When I got there and told them my issues, they rushed me back immediately.”

Karen Wilder-Smalls

Strokes at 47 & 48
“I’ve had two strokes in my life… high blood pressure since age 19… and diagnosed with diabetes since age 37.  There were no warning signs other than a headache.” 

Geoff Parsons

Strokes at 61 & 63
“I found that I was sleeping about 16 hours a day.  I would sleep about 10 or 11 or 12 hours at night and then would take a couple of naps.”

Linda Witherspoon

Stroke at 47
“I remained in a coma for almost a month… I was on life support for weeks and the various doctors were not enthusiastic about my changes for recovery.”

Meredith Harper

Strokes at 22 & 27
“In order to complete my coursework on time, my mom would sometimes come up and help me keep up.  Tests that took my classmates 50 minutes took me 5.5 hours to complete.”

*Thank you to Paul Olsen for the above survivor photos.*