Gary Sampson

A stroke left Gary Sampson unable to do the things he loves, like volunteering.

Gary Sampson is one of those people you can’t help but admire. The self-described “professional volunteer” has made a living through a life of service. His career includes work as a police officer, part of the National Red Cross, and a Victim Witness Director at the District Attorney’s office.

In retirement, Gary worked with the Loveland Fair Board, serves as the Zone Chair of the Lions Club, is the Leading Knight for the Elks Lodge, and drives for the Senior Alternatives in Transportation program. He’s also a family man, enjoying his two children and five grandchildren whenever he can.

But, last year Gary suffered a stroke, bringing his active lifestyle to a halt. The stroke affected Gary’s left side and caused acute respiratory failure. He required a ventilator to breathe. To wean from the ventilator, he admitted to Northern Colorado Long Term Acute Hospital. After successfully weaning from the vent, he was ready for inpatient rehabilitation. That led him next door to Northern Colorado Rehabilitation Hospital.

One of the main reasons Gary chose NCRH was their competency in the care of stroke patients. He was very pleased with his decision. “Northern Colorado Rehabilitation Hospital is such a positive and motivating place to do rehab!” Gary stated. All the staff answered all my questions and it felt like a family atmosphere. Even Dr. Pearson, who was my LTACH physician, would come [to] see how I was doing in rehab.”

Upon completing his rehabilitation stay, Gary discharged home with his wife, Sherlyn. He continues his therapy on an outpatient basis at NCRH, progressing each day. He has returned to the Lions Club and is now the Second Vice District Governor with the 6NE District.

The most important advice Gary has to give for those in a similar situation?

“Little steps, in the long run, end up being big steps and NCRH helped me to be able to stand and walk again!”