Thursday, April 25, 2024

Striding out in honour of Harry

When Victorian man, Stephen Harrington, hits the trails for a good cause this month, it will be without his best friend by his side.

The stroke survivor lost his beloved Miniature Schnauzer Harry in July. Now he’s dedicated the event to his four-legged friend, determined to Stride4Stroke in Harry’s honour.

Stephen’s stroke struck in March 2021. His wife Janis responded quickly, recognising the F.A.S.T signs thanks to a magnet on the fridge.

“The paramedics got to our house within minutes. By the time they arrived I was ok. They checked me out and we headed to the Austin Hospital, and on the way there I had another stroke,” Mr Harrington said.

“While I was aware of the signs of stroke, I was quite ignorant, no one thinks it’s going to happen to them until it does.”

“I participated in Stride4Stroke in 2021, Harry and I walked everywhere. He was such a wonderful dog. We are so lucky to have had nine amazing years with him.”

Harry at last year’s Stride4Stroke.

Mr Harrington said while his stroke was unfortunate, his recovery journey has been amazing. He was even involved in a research project with the Florey Institute and has encouraged the team to walk with him during the month of November.

“I am so privileged to have Doctor Deena Ebaid, Laura McCambridge and Rachael Telfer as part of the Harry’s Honour team,” Mr Harrington said.

“They’re going to bring their own dogs and we’ll walk in Harry’s memory. The whole thing is such a powerful event, it’s bringing us all together again – all while lowering our own stroke risks.”

Stride4Stroke participants are encouraged to set an activity goal to increase their daily ‘moving minutes’. They can choose any activity to complete within the month, from walking, running, swimming, cycling, an online exercise class or a goal in stroke rehabilitation. The options are endless.

Stroke Foundation Executive Director of Marketing, John De Rango was thrilled to hear Stephen would be reuniting with the researchers during November for such a special cause.

“We know that 80% of strokes are preventable, and taking steps to adopt a healthy lifestyle can reduce your risk,” Mr De Rango said.

“Stride4Stroke is a great starting point to make the changes that can reduce your risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes which are all modifiable risk factors of stroke.”

Stride4Stroke begins on November 1 and runs the entire month. More information can be found here.

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