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On July 29, 2023, 20-year old Patrick Hoey was enjoying Keuka Lake in upstate New York when his life was changed forever. Patrick fractured his C5 vertebrae after diving into the lake. He’s been left with severe damage to his spinal cord.

Sinking face first in the water, paralyzed, the actions of his friends saved his life. Patrick was immediately transported to Strong Memorial in Rochester, NY for immediate and intensive emergency surgery. His long-term prognosis is still unclear at this time. A week later he was transferred to Magee Rehabilitation in Philadelphia. Uncertain about Patrick’s long-term prognosis, the family remains hopeful he will regain feeling and movement in his upper and lower body, but he has a very long road ahead of him.

Updates (9)

April 17, 2024

Dear Friends and H4H supporters,

We wanted to share a little about what Patrick has been up to these past few weeks. Patrick continues with therapy at Magee Riverfront and is focused on Occupational goals to continue to push and make the most of his abilities. He also spends considerable time in the Magee wellness gym where he uses the various adapted gym equipment to work on strength and conditioning. Their “standing frame” allows him to stand fully supported giving his body the much needed opportunity to weight bear and stretch. He also uses their “stim bike” which provides electrical stimulation to his legs while engaged in pedaling keeping his muscles activated. He uses both of these pieces of equipment at the gym but having this equipment at the house would allow for easy access and more frequent use; so we are actively researching options for obtaining this equipment for Patrick’s daily use at home. Unfortunately we are learning that insurance coverage of such valuable (and expensive) equipment is unlikely. Patrick’s absolute favorite piece of equipment is the “Lokomat”- a robotic walking system that allows Patrick to walk on a treadmill with about 50 percent weight bearing. He started to use the lokomat weekly since mid-January and it’s amazing to watch him in it. This machine is a “pay per use” piece of equipment , so we are grateful for the generous support of our community each time he walks on this!

He continues to enjoy furthering his art and music expression which began to blossom while at Magee Hospital. He finds this expression to be therapeutic and a good diversion; so much so that he is taking a college course on art therapy! His final exam is painting a ceiling tile to be placed in the ceiling at Magee. This art course is one of 2 courses he is currently taking through Penn State world campus and he’s enrolled in more courses for this summer and this fall.

He also loves staying connected with his friends using his adaptive PlayStation system. This system offers a modified controller that he is able to use with his limited hand /arm function and it gives him the ability to play soccer and baseball with all his friends! The purchasing of this system was made possible through the generosity of our community.

Patrick bravely pushes onward,continuing to learn how to adapt, overcome and become as independent at possible. This weekend we celebrated how hard he has worked with a weekend trip to Happy Valley visiting his friends and seeing his campus again. We used every bit of knowledge and strength we have gained these past 8 months to make this weekend trip happen. And the reward was lots of laughs and lots of love filled the days!! We remain grateful for each day and for all our incredible friends.

With our love and thanks,

The Hoeys

February 9, 2024

Dearest Friends and H4H supporters,

We apologize for going so long since our last update, but that is because there has been so much going on to keep us moving forward - we haven’t had much chance to slow down (nor do I think we will) or share. I will begin this update as I do most, and pretty much the same way I greet folks asking how Patrick is doing, simply put, he is doing everything he can. He continues to work hard in the gym on PT, OT, the wellness center and Art program at Magee Riverfront making the most of what he can do, always with such a positive attitude. A recent big development was to start using a device called a locomat, which is essentially a harness and electronic frame system that produces a walking motion on a treadmill. There are several key benefits to this and we hope this helps stimulate his recovery. Patrick continues to emerge as an ambassador for those with SCI and was invited to speak at a Magee fundraising event and on behalf of the Adam Taliaferro Foundation (a former PSU football player with a SCI). I have attached a video link where Patrick thanks the foundation for their support of him and you can see him on the locomat.

He continues to engage with more activities including: meals out, movies with friends, and family activities, Christmas with his cousins, hitting “Yuletide” at Devon on New Years eve among other things. Patrick turned 21 on Jan 18th and we were so glad to celebrate his “first beer” with a great group of friends and family. He has also started using an adaptive Playstation (paid for by HHL giving) which has allowed greater connectivity to his college friends who are away at school. Lastly, but certainly not least he has started taking courses on-line at Penn State World campus as he begins to navigate a path forward to continuing his education.

The HHL events have been a fantastic opportunity to see and thank his wonderful supporters in person. In particular the Turkey Trot and Top Golf events were hugely successful (a record for the trot), so much fun and gave us a chance to see and thank all of the wonderful people that have been supporting us on this journey, such generosity in so many ways. We just can’t thank everyone enough. We are grateful to all of the H4H supporters and particularly the amazing organizing committee of friends who dedicate so much energy into helping support Patrick’s needs enabling a future of healing and health.

The outpouring of support continues to amaze us and we are so grateful!

With our love and thanks.

The Hoeys

Photo Galleries (7)

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May 20, 2024

Stay strong Patrick, you were inspiring as a diver for Conestoga, and you continue to be an inspiration now! Take care, The Duda Family

John Duda

May 5, 2024

Wishing Patrick the best recovery as he works to gain as much mobility and strength back! If he ever wants to talk to my son Blake who experienced a similar injury, let us know through your Mom’s friend, Marie. God bless you Patrick!!

Leigh Emerson

April 30, 2024

We are not able to make it to the comedy night (which sounds awesome!!) but wanted to continue to show support. You’re inspirational Patrick!

Tara Zlotkin