Man of Steel


A Man of Steel Finds His Mettle


After a severe blow to the head in 2011, Rafael came to CNS for postacute care in a wheelchair, deeply impaired by loss of vision and poor cognitive skills.

As a competent worker in a steel mill, he was devastated by an accident in which a pipe struck his head and left him with right temporal contusions.

“I can’t believe how far he’s come – he’s our miracle.”

His life of marriage, fatherhood and hauling steel was threatened with a loss that no one ever sees coming.

Having gained his ability to walk independently, Rafael transitioned to the Assisted Living program after several months in CNS postacute care. Since then, his vision and ability to process information has improved and his employer says the door is open for a part-time job.

“I have three families now,” he says of those who stood by him, “my children, my co-workers, and the staff at CNS.”

In fact, an email from his employer to his rehabilitation case manager marveled at the progress he has made.

“I can’t believe how far he’s come,” it reads. “He’s our miracle – it brings tears to my eyes.”
According to his case manager the tears are understandable, given the distance he’s traveled in his journey of recovery. While in rehabilitation, Rafael relearned skills for home management, such as cleaning, cooking, and making his bed. His success in Assisted Living entails rebuilding specific life skills such as banking, paying bills, budgeting, organizing, and reintegrating back into some level of work or volunteering.

“He progressed faster physically than cognitively,” his case manager said. “He’ll always require help, but his greatest asset has been a willingness to follow our suggestions.”

His mettle was tested, but not lost. The injured man who came to us is today a changed man - emerging as a competent person who gets daily encouragement to live fully.