Warren moved to the Cabarrus County area in 1979 from New Jersey. He married his wife Maria in 2003 and was a manager at Perdue in Concord for over 20 years … life was great.
Warren was on vacation for the July 4th holiday in 2015 with his family in Myrtle Beach when he started feeling dizzy. The next day, he felt better and got up to go to the beach with his boys. Once on the beach he started to feel dizzy again, but was also extremely nauseous. He blamed it on the sun and returned to the room to try and cool down. When the dizziness continued, his family eventually called 911.
By the time Warren had reached the Emergency Department at the local hospital, one side of his face began to droop and he was numb on the left side.
It was determined after a CT scan, Warren had suffered a stroke. He wanted to be discharged to return home and receive his care here. He eventually left the Myrtle Beach-area hospital and went straight to see Dr. Bing Liu at NorthEast Neurology.
Warren credits Dr. Liu with changing his life. While Dr. Liu couldn’t determine exactly what caused the stroke, Warren had several risk factors: type II diabetes, a history of high blood pressure, a stressful job, an African American and a history of substance abuse. At just 65 years old, Warren immediately made several changes to his lifestyle including walking daily, retiring from his job and quit smoking cigarettes.
One day in January of 2017, Warren was walking around Carolina Mall to get his 6,000 steps in when he began feeling dizzy again. He got in his car and headed home, but his wife immediately made him go to the Emergency Department (ED). When he arrived at CHS NorthEast’s ED, the doctors and nurses utilized a telestroke unit to have him observed by a neurologist immediately. Warren was still within the time window to receive the tPA shot (which dissolves clots and restores blood flow) thanks to his wife, the doctors in the ED and the telestroke capabilities at CHS NorthEast.
It was determined by Cardiothoracic Surgeon Dr. Takla that Warren’s carotid artery was 90% blocked. It was during this time, Warren prayed a lot and made a promise if he got through this he would volunteer to help others that were going through the effects of a stroke.
After a successful surgery, his care and support from CHS NorthEast were far from over. In addition to an extended stay at the hospital to recover, therapy and follow up appointments; Cabarrus County Paramedics went to his house to assess his safety needs and he joined the Stroke Support Group.
Today, you wouldn’t know Warren had survived two strokes if you just met him. But he will gladly share his story of an ongoing journey made possible by a persistent wife and the great care he received from staff and doctors affiliated with CHS NorthEast. Warren has been volunteering for over a year now in the neurosciences department every Wednesday, and he knows just what to say, or not to say, to stroke patients and their families. He knows the anger and confusion they are feeling after a stroke, and feels humbled and blessed when he can put even the smallest smile on their face.