Kingsley man, once paralyzed, is now back on his feet

Keith Bohle who was once paralyzed, is now about to walk, work, and even drive.

A Northwest Iowa man is sharing his story about overcoming a debilitating disease that left him paralyzed for months.

I went to Kingsley to meet with Keith Bohle, and hear more about his journey to recovery.

Bohle loves job, he's the owner of Keith Bohle Financial in Kingsley where he's helped hundreds of clients over the years. But one day last August at the office, something was really off.

"Writing some contracts out and all the sudden I couldn't write my signature, sign my name," said Bohle.

He thought he had a pinch nerve, so he went about his day.

"And then my hands starting shaking, so those were the first signs that something was wrong," said Bohle.

Bohle got checked out, but even after multiple MRIs and CAT scans, there were still no answers.

Not until, his sister-in-law said it could be a disease called, Guillain–Barré , a rare disorder where the immune system attacks the nerves, eventually paralyzing the body.

"Had less movement in my legs, less movement in my arms and I was completely paralyzed from the start about 36 hours," said Bohle.

Bohle was admitted to the intensive care unit for 11 days, for this exact disorder, which left him paralyzed neck down.

"I was able to talk and communicate. I could move my head side to side, things like that, it was a really scare thing, because I didn't know what was going on," said Bohle.

Bohle went through rehabilitation at Madonna, in Lincoln, for nearly five months.

"And I had therapy five days a week, about four and half to five hours a day then I would pick up therapy on the weekends as well, just try to keep moving and doing things," said Bohle.

His hard work and dedication paid off, Bohle started off this year on a wheelchair, and just three weeks ago, he ditched his walker.

And though he doesn't have full use of his hands, he's still able to drive.

"That's the sense of freedom that it's really come back, it's been important to me, is that independence of doing things again," said Bohle.

And as a person, who couldn't even feed himself, his wife Melanie says, he has made great progress in a short amount of time.

"He's always had a goal, besides just to get better. But he has a lot of ambition, a lot of drive, and his goal for independence," she said.

"There's so many things you could do, I could sit back and wait, but I really wanted my life back and pushed really hard and try to keep my best positive attitude all the way through," said Bohle.

Bohle was awarded the Madonna Spirit Award, for his positive attitude and perfect attendance at every therapy session.

He hopes his story, will encourage other patients, to keep moving forward despite difficult times.


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