The definition of a survivor is “someone regarded as capable of surviving changing conditions, misfortune, etc. A misfortune means a mishap, illness or calamity.
On May 30, 1966 Randy Krulish had a misfortune. On October 1, 1948 I had an illness. Randy was injured in a diving accident and fractured his neck leaving him paralyzed. I became very ill with poliomyelitis (Polio). Both were changing conditions. Both of us endured our changing conditions the same way. We became survivors.
Randy knew what it was like to be normal. He had twelve years to enjoy all the running and playing a boy should be able to endure. I became ill at six and a half months old. I was probably just learning how to crawl and perhaps walk around furniture holding on. I would never know what it was like to run, jump, skip or be normal.
Over the years, we both had families that were there supporting us in all we pursued. We both grew up on farms in the Midwest, We both had careers that enabled us to make a living for ourselves. We both have a very strong Faith to keep us going. Today we have both survived our changing condition.
Now many years later we have meet and made a friendship. Recently we both spoke for our church Guest Day and shared our stories of inspiration. Challenges come our way every day. This day was no exception for Randy. On the way to the church Randy had a flat tire on his van. God placed him in the path, for repair, just in front of a young man that he knew from his home town who repaired his tire and sent him on his way. He arrived at church on time for his presentation. When it was time to leave to go back home the elevator did not work properly in the church. After much trying to repair it, we decided that our best option was to call the Blooming Prairie Fire Department for a rescue. Upon their arrival many men were working with Randy to find the safest way to carry his heavy wheel chair down the flight of steps. Other firemen were working in the elevator to get it working. The elevator was working in no time and they did not have to carry that heavy chair down the steps. We were so grateful to the fire department for their assistance.
October 9 was anti bullying day in our school. Every one was encouraged to wear orange. School is back in session and we are looking forward to sharing our stories with the children. It is very important for them to see that because we are physically different, there is no need to treat us differently. The #1 person bullied is a physically handicapped person. We share how we adjust to our challenges and make them positive.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. There are many survivors from breast cancer, thanks to early detection. A good friend is doing all she can to fight cancer by joining forces with many in our community to raise money for the cause. As a survivor she will make a difference.
October 26 will be Polio Awareness Day. Rotary International has been working to eradicate the disease of polio by making sure that all children worldwide have their vaccinations. Please make sure that your children have their vaccinations. Wee must all work together to “End Polio Now”.
Spinal cord injuries are making progress with research every day. There is always Hope.