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Patient Returns to Playing Ice Hockey

Mr. Sterchak was injured in December 2021, when he fell from a two-story apartment. He suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI), grade three diffuse axonal injury, and right brainstem hemorrhage. He also suffered from multiple fractures which included left temporal bone fracture, bilateral mastoid fractures, left skull base fracture, left orbit fracture, left sided rib fractures, C1 lateral mass fracture, and inferior and superior pubic rami, left sided intertrochanteric femur fracture, and left wrist/hand fracture. He was also found to have pulmonary contusions and bilateral pneumothoraxes.

Mr. Sterchak spent several months at TIRR Memorial Hermann Center and Nexus Neurorecovery Center in Houston. He has participated in Pate Rehab, which is part of RWW, as well as an outpatient program at TIRR. He began a comprehensive home and community program with Rehab Without Walls in Irving, Texas in November 2023.

Prior to his injury, Mr. Sterchak lived independently. He worked in the food industry and enjoyed exercising, basketball, and hockey. He would like to return to work and be more independent. However, most importantly Mr. Sterchak wanted to get back on the ice. He had played ice hockey for years and this was one thing that he really wanted to do. So, Rehab Without Walls made this happen. With the help of his recreation therapist, Fi Lee, Mr. Sterchak was able to participate in a free adaptive program with the Dallas Stars! This is a six-week program he will participate in. This experience has led to many other ideas for Mr. Sterchak which includes possible job or volunteer opportunities outside of the food industry.

When asked about the experience he told us that he really enjoyed it and is ready to go back. His sister told us that she never thought she would ever see him on skates again and was so excited at how well he did and so thankful we were able to make this happen for him.

Patient William playing hockey in a skating rink.

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