Hope Awards Celebration Honors Inspiring Patients Battling Neurological Conditions

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Contact Information:
Melissa Kenyon
Colorado Neurological Institute
mkenyon@thecni.org
303-357-5442

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Hope Awards Celebration Honors Inspiring Patients Battling Neurological Conditions

When: Saturday, April 20th, 6pm to 9pm
Where: Inverness Hotel and Conference Center, Columbine Room, 200 Inverness Drive West, Englewood, CO 80112

On Saturday, April 20th, four patients facing various neurological conditions will be honored for their great courage and inspiration to others at Colorado Neurological Institute’s Cindy Acree Hope Awards event. Patients nominated include: Donna Miller (Parkinson’s patient), Jack Sommars (brain hemorrhage survivor), Caitlyn Deichsel (cochlear implant recipient) and Henrik Frei (stroke survivor).

Established in 1999, the Hope Awards Celebration was originally founded in honor of Cindy Acree, who in 1991 underwent brain surgery for epilepsy and suffered a stroke. Despite her medical hurdles, Cindy exhibited tenacity and bravery throughout her recovery, and she continues to work tirelessly to promote awareness for neurological conditions. Ms. Acree is a former Colorado State Representative, past chairman of the CNI Board of Directors and a major contributor to CNI’s volunteer successes. The Hope Award is named for her daughter, Hope, another example of Cindy’s miracles.

Patient Bios:
Donna Miller: Donna Miller is a patient of Dr. Rajeev Kumar who has undergone Deep Brain Stimulation surgery for her Parkinson’s Disease (PD). Her positive results have inspired her to get involved in community education and outreach. She now runs a DBS support group, and has also volunteered her time to assist with the production of patient education videos. In 2011 and 2012, she submitted her story in video form to the highly respected American Academy of Neurology “Neuro Film Festival.”

Jack Sommars was nominated by Dr. David Loy, a CNI interventional neuroradiologist and researcher, as well as Dr. Alex West, a neurosurgeon and Director of CNI’s Brain and Spinal Tumor program. Jack is a writer and high level executive who was treated at SMC for a grade 5 subarachnoid hemorrhage. Jack plans to write about his long journey with the hope that others will relate and feel inspired.

Caitlyn Deichsel is a six year old who has been dealing with severe/profound hearing loss since she was born. When she was two she received her first cochlear implant. Then at age five, she asked for a second implant. Despite her young age, she faced the challenges of surgery and rehab with valor and fortitude. Following Caitlyn’s surgeries, she and her family have remained involved in CNI’s activities for “CI Kids.”

Henrik Frei is a young man nominated by Dr. Daniel Huddle, an interventional neuroradiologist at Swedish. Henrik was seen by the Swedish stroke team, the interventional neuroradiology department and CNI’s partners at Craig Hospital. This past year, Henrik experienced a severe stroke with serious complications. At the time, he was the father of two year old twin girls, made sausages for a living and his wife was pregnant with their third child. His outcome was deemed poor based on the severity of his case, yet his recovery at Swedish and Craig has been remarkable.

About Colorado Neurological Institute Colorado Neurological Institute (CNI) has been providing research, education and patient services for persons with neurological conditions and their caregivers since 1988. As the only nonprofit organization in the Rocky Mountain Region of its kind, CNI offer patients easy access to comprehensive, state-of-the-art care, support services, clinical trials, outpatient neuro-rehab, counseling and more. Learn more at www.thecni.org.
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