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Rookie teammate set to tackle her first marathon in honor of her Mom

Runner Story

This November, Tedy’s Team Rookie, Marissa Gross, will be running her first marathon as a member of our 2023 TCS New York City Marathon team in honor of her mom, Cathy.

In December of 2020, at just 62-years old, Cathy suffered a rare stroke, known as a Cerebral Venous Sinus Thrombosis (CVST), that put her in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for over a month.

Two weeks prior to her stroke, Cathy went to the ER with a severe headache and ear pain that would not go away. After a CT scan came back clear, doctors could not determine the cause of her pain. Marissa and her family later learned that the blood clot that Cathy had was in her jugular vein, and therefore, without a more detailed CT scan examining the veins in her neck, the blockage went undetected.

“My mom’s experience taught us how important it is to understand all the warning signs of stroke – even the more subtle symptoms,” Marissa said. “Knowing the signs and advocating for yourself until you receive an answer is crucial when it comes to stroke.”

After more than a month in the hospital, Cathy was able to be moved to an outpatient facility to continue her recovery. While her initial prognosis was not the most positive, with intense therapy, she has made incredible progress and is at a point today that her family never thought would be possible.

“My mom’s strength and determination to get better each day is why she is now living at home with a full life ahead of her,” Marissa said. “Although she suffers from deficits including aphasia and physical barriers, her progress has been incredible, and we are truly so fortunate to have her with us today.”

It has been a long road for Cathy and her entire support system. Thankfully, she is walking and able to enjoy dinners, spending time with friends and family, and going on vacations. Although Cathy’s comeback journey will be ongoing, she continues to push herself to make even more extraordinary improvements in speech, physical and occupational therapy.

“What drew me to Tedy’s Team is their dedication to stroke education and warning signs,” explained Marissa. “Supporting Tedy’s Team, and their mission to provide survivor and caregiver support, is an honor and I am so excited to be representing them on November 5th.”

Marissa will be tackling the 2023 TCS New York City Marathon this fall, with her fellow teammates, to raise life-saving funds and awareness for stroke and heart disease. To support her fundraising and awareness efforts, please visit her personal team member page and learn the warning signs of stroke TODAY.

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