JUST months after having a life-changing stroke, Andy Cloud will be taking part in a sponsored walk for a charity which has supported him.
The 59-year-old is walking in this weekend’s Step Out For Stroke event in Southsea, Portsmouth, organised by the Stroke Association.
It will be our 36th anniversary next month. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than to take on this walk with Andrew.Janice Cloud
His decision to sign up comes after he had a stroke in January. He woke up unable to speak or move the right side of his body.
Quick thinking by his wife Janice saw an ambulance called and Andrew was taken to hospital where he spent four weeks recovering.
He was left unable to walk, and had difficulties swallowing and talking.
Janice, from Southsea, said: ‘Andy is recovering well. His main problems are around communication, concentration and fatigue.
‘He has forgotten how to read and write and has no conception of numbers, times or dates. He can sometimes get his words mixed up which can lead to some very odd conversations.’
Janice thanked the hospital teams who have cared for Andy and the Stroke Association for its support.
She added: ‘We will be forever grateful for the wonderful care and support that Andy has received.
‘We cannot speak highly enough about the excellent neurological team at Southampton University Hospital, and the stroke and rehabilitation teams at Queen Alexandra Hospital.
‘We’re also really thankful for the Stroke Association’s wonderful support.
‘When you’re suddenly faced with something as terrifying as a stroke, having someone on a personal level tell you everything will be okay makes such a difference.
‘Portsmouth Different Strokes Group have also been an invaluable source of kindness, understanding and support.’
Janice is a trained nurse and has now retired to care for Andy while he continues his recovery.
To mark how far he has come already, the pair have signed up for the Step Out for Stroke this Saturday at Canoe Lake. The event is a fun walk for all ages and abilities.
Janice said: ‘It has been a very scary journey so far and there were times at the beginning when we thought Andy may not survive, let alone come home and walk again.
‘We both feel blessed that there is so much support in Portsmouth for us and this makes life a lot less daunting.
‘It will be our 36th anniversary next month.
‘I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than to take on this walk with Andy.’
To donate to Andy visit justgiving.com/fundraising/andy-cloud