Nick was a healthy Arkansas Razorbacks fan, working in the commercial equipment business owned by his family. He was hardworking, hard-charging, had a history of high blood pressure, and didn’t mind an energy drink as needed. Nick and his wife were expecting a baby and he was on a course of becoming a father.
On December 3, 2018, Nick took a tumble at home. To his terrifying surprise, he couldn’t get up. Despite his repeated protests, Nick’s wife transported him to the hospital via ambulance.
Nick had suffered a massive hemorrhagic stroke. His emergency treatment included a craniotomy to access and remove the blood clot. He stayed in the hospital for the better part of two months. The hospital stay was the easy part. His return to his old self was, and still is, the hard part. Nick was left completely paralyzed on his left side: his legs and arm were beyond his control. While in the hospital, Nick learned he was having a son – this gave him a whole new reason to heal and play with his boy.
Nick entered Physical Therapy as soon as he was discharged. He asked his physical therapist if he could walk again; his therapist said, “Nick, I’m not really sure.” Nick knew his recovery was solely in his hands, and his background of never giving up would be tested. Nick worked tirelessly with the staff at Encompass Health in Fort Smith, Arkansas, and with a Hemi-Walker and an AFO brace, Nick was able to walk into his house to attend his son’s baby shower.
Perseverance is a sometimes-overused word, but in Nick’s case, it is the only word. Nick said, “You have to think about moving that toe, dream about it, keep trying to push, and never stop.” With grit and determination, Nick progressively made it from an electric wheelchair to a walker, and onwards to crutches. He is currently walking on his own, with the close oversight of his supporting family and friends.
Nick is diligently working on regaining the full use of his left arm. He has been returning to his family’s business on a limited “guest appearance basis” but intends to keep contributing to the fullest extent of his abilities.
Nick navigated the trials and tribulations of a new computer, an update to his video conferencing application, and a time zone difference to speak with the team at United Brain Association. He is one of the most inspiring people we have met. To watch Nick discuss his ongoing conquest of stroke and disability, please check out his YouTube video here:
Nick’s YouTube posts can be at: @nickkremers, and his TikTok videos can be found here: https://www.tiktok.com/@nickkremers?_t=8f3QzxGbe3S&_r=1
Nick has also started a clothing line supporting Stroke Recovery, his store can be found here: https://www.strokelyfe.com
We look forward to relaying Nick’s progress to our community over the next several years. We’ll post his progress on a regular basis. For more information on Stroke, please visit our Brain Resource: https://unitedbrainassociation.org/brain-resources/stroke.