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"What Comes Next?"

Inpatient medical rehabilitation can transform your life — helping your strength, skills and independence, getting you home sooner, and helping you return to work, school or leisure activities you love. You'll benefit from the expert care, innovative treatment and advanced technologies provided by a multidisciplinary team of rehabilitation specialists.

Led by a physiatrist, a board-certified physician specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation, your team may include rehabilitation nurses, physical, occupational, cognitive and respiratory therapists; speech language pathologists; psychologists and neuropsychologists; dietitians; pharmacists; prosthetists; orthotists; recreation therapists; social workers/case managers; and other clinical and support staff. Together, they will tailor treatment to your needs, goals and hopes for the future.

You and your family may find yourselves asking the daunting question of “What comes next?” 

The patients below chose inpatient medical rehabilitation as the next step in their recovery journeys. Read their stories and learn about the treatment and encouragement they received, their courage and determination, their challenges and their triumphs.

Are you an AMRPA member interested in submitting a story? Visit our submissions page to learn more.


Timmy Fanco Defies the Odds Following Car Crash

To say the Fancos are fighters is an understatement.

On June 10, 2022, Liz Fanco of Alto, MI, received a phone call. Her children, Anna and Timmy, had just been in a broadside collision.

Anna, 17, was driving and suffered a collapsed lung, broken leg and several broken ribs. Her younger brother, Timmy, 11 at the time, wasn’t expected to survive. The damage to the passenger side of the car was so extensive, EMS had pronounced him dead upon arrival. Eventually, they found a pulse. And after an hour of working to get him out of the car, they airlifted Timmy to Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital. There, he spent 11 days in a coma.

A Long Road Ahead

Timmy suffered a traumatic brain injury and was transferred to Mary Free Bed for inpatient rehabilitation. Anna also transferred to Mary Free Bed, but Timmy’s level of recovery was impossible to predict.

“At Helen DeVos, the neurology notes were classifying Timmy as having a grade three diffuse axonal brain injury,” said Dr. Marianne Mousigian, pediatric physiatrist at Mary Free Bed. “It can be very serious, and it’s hard to determine where a patient will end up cognitively after the injury.”

Getting Back on Track

Timmy spent four weeks relentlessly recovering with physical, occupational and speech therapy. His goal was to get back to running races with his family – something they had all loved to do together before the accident. In July, he did just that and joined his family on the Metro Way 5K.

Timmy Fanco 2Timmy and Liz Fanco cross the finish line of the Metro Way 5K six weeks after a car crash nearly took Timmy’s life.

But being part of the 5K was just the beginning.  Throughout his recovery, Timmy’s had his sights set on running 13.1 miles in the Grand Rapids Half Marathon this fall.

Motivation Runs in the Family

It’s easy to see where Timmy draws his strength and motivation from. Just one year prior, his mom was turning a corner of her own. After struggling to meet her running and health goals, Liz found success at Mary Free Bed and lost 115 pounds. She went on to achieve her goal of running the New York City Marathon. Read Liz’s inspiring story on

“From the moment he could talk again, he said – I’m gonna run that race this October,” Liz said.

Bursting with Stride

Six weeks after the crash, Timmy graduated from Mary Free Bed using a walker. He brought his fighting spirit to outpatient therapy. His mobility increased quickly with intensive, twice-weekly visits as part of the Mary Free Bed Day Rehab Program.

In October, just four months after the crash that nearly took his life, Timmy achieved the goal he set out to do. He completed the Grand Rapids Half Marathon – crossing the finish line on his own, alongside his parents.

In the video, hear more from Liz and Timmy’s doctors and therapists, and watch Timmy cross the finish line.

Posted August 2, 2023

This story was originally published by Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital. Edits and additions have been made for clarity and style. All photos are credited to Mary Free Bed.

Are you an AMRPA member interested in submitting a story? Visit our submissions page to learn more.

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