Stroke vic­tim serves as an in­spi­ra­tion Jes­sica War­riner GET­TING HELP FAST IS CRU­CIAL

Comment News (Armadale) - - News -

JARRAHDALE’S Brian Phillips pas­sion for life, com­mu­nity and art could not be stopped by a stroke.

Mr Phillips suf­fered a stroke in 2014 which left him paral­ysed on his right side and lead to dif­fi­cul­ties with speech and swal­low­ing.

“Lead­ing up to the stroke, I was at home with my broth­erin-law. Then it hap­pened, just like that,” Mr Phillips said.

His wife Eileen drove him to Ar­madale Hos­pi­tal, af­ter which he was trans­ferred to Fre­man­tle Hos­pi­tal.

“I don’t re­mem­ber much of those early days at Fre­man­tle, but I can re­mem­ber get­ting trans­ferred via hoist from bed to bed,” Mr Phillips said.

A few days later Mr Phillips was back at Ar­madale Hos­pi­tal and his streak of de­ter­mi­na­tion was shin­ing through.

“One of the girls, she was go­ing to go on a hol­i­day and said ‘I want to see you walk­ing be­fore I leave’,” he said.

“She wanted him to do 30 me­tres and he did 50,” Mrs Phillips said.

“When he first had the stroke, the doc­tor thought he wouldn’t walk.”

The recovery process for Mr

Phillips has re­volved around phys­io­ther­apy and speech pathol­ogy, with spe­cial­ist Suzi Ry­bak there ev­ery step of the way through one-on-one ses­sions and group work.

“With Brian, we’ve been work­ing on his speech so he can be clear and peo­ple can un­der­stand him. He’s been ex­cel­lent with that; he’s come a re­ally long way,” she said.

Ms Ry­bak said the 78-yearold had been an in­spi­ra­tion to the group.

“I wanted to show the group what you can do if you try. I want to be ac­tive and show the world what you can still do,” Mr Phillips said.

His stroke cer­tainly hasn’t held him back – Mr Phillips is a life mem­ber of his lo­cal Men’s Shed, par­tic­i­pates in mul­ti­ple com­mu­nity groups, shows his art­work in ex­hi­bi­tions and in­spires fel­low painters.

“He was paint­ing be­fore he had his stroke but that was with his right arm, and now he has to use his left arm,” Mrs Phillips said.

Mr Phillips said his ac­tive life in the com­mu­nity and con­tin­u­a­tion with art has been fan­tas­tic.

“It’s a great sen­sa­tion,” he said.

LOOK OUT FOR FAST SIGNS OF STROKE: F - Face. A - Arms. S - Speech.T - Time. Brian and Eileen Phillips, of Jarrahdale

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