at home rehab


Kirk approaches his latest challenge with an unparalleled, yet familiar tenacity. His goal is nothing short of a full recovery. He has made it a plan to return to teaching at Walled Lake Central High School in the fall. He feels that he will be able to utilize this experience as a means to help others. There is no one else better prepared to climb the mountain set before him.

Kirk initially began his acute treatment and rehab at the University of Michigan Hospital in Ann Arbor, Michigan. While there, he underwent successful surgery to fuse his fourth and fifth cervical vertebrae together. On New Year's Eve, Dr. Susan Harkema, a world-renowned researcher in the field of spinal cord injuries paid him a visit. She discussed some of the progressive rehabilitation methods implemented at the Frazier Rehab Hospital where she directs the Spinal Cord Rehabilitation Program. A month later, Kirk transferred programs and made the trip to Louisville, Kentucky. While at Frazier, Kirk engaged in daily treadmill locomotor training. He made vast improvement in core strength and pulmonary health.

After two months of active weight bearing physical therapy, a decision was made to bring Kirk closer to home. He continued on with inpatient rehab therapy at Mary Free Bed Rehab Hospital in Grand Rapids, Michigan. While at Mary Free Bed he focused on intense occupational therapy to increase independent activities. Kirk began to regain the ability to flex and extend his right wrist. He also started to regain the ability to pinch his thumb and index finger together. His physical therapy progress included significant healing in his separated left shoulder and greatly improved strength in the left arm.

On May 14, 2009, after almost seven months in the hospital, Kirk returned to Southeastern Michigan. He currently is staying at his parent’s home in Dexter, MI. The greatest benefit of Kirk moving to Dexter is the availability of family members eager to assist in "round the clock" rehab workouts. His mother, Jan Pedersen, gave the "green light" to temporarily convert the living room into a rehab gym. Over time, essential pieces of rehab equipment will be acquired. No longer will Kirk be limited to 30 and 45 minute sessions of rehab. His thirst for retraining his body will encounter no limits. The rehabilitation marathon will inevitably have moments of great success as well obstacles that challenge our very souls. However, Kirk, the Pedersen Family, and the Symbol of Strength Army are eager to push forward, continually looking upwards to the glorious summit of recovery!

carepage updates

Kirk’s “Carepages” provides the latest updates on his progress and a method for users to leave messages to Kirk and his many supporters.

You can easily access this message board by going to . Once at the site simply type in the Search Box: “Kirk Pedersen”. You will need to register with an e-mail address and password. This ensures that you receive a notification when there are new updates. Your e-mail address will not be sold or receive soliciting messages.

You can also join the Symbol of Strength Facebook page located here:
Symbol Of Strength Facebook Group



Mary Free Bed Rehab Hospital – Grand Rapids, MI

Frazier Rehab Hospital – Louisville, KY

join kirk's army

The easiest way to help is to join Kirk's Army of Supporters. Please enter in your contact information below. This will allow us to provide updates on upcoming events and ways to help Kirk. Your information will not be shared or sold. However, it is crucial for the success of many of our efforts and fundraising events that people stay informed.

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Alternately, you can join Kirk on Facebook:

Symbol Of Strength Facebook Group