Most people would agree that many activities in life require two hands. However, if you asked Chartwell Heritage Glen resident Lionel, he’d beg to differ. Living with only one arm for more than 60 years, Lionel firmly believes “It doesn’t matter how hard it is, there’s always a way that you can do it!”
On June 6th, 1958, at the tender age of 21, it was just another average day at work when Lionel suffered an unfortunate accident that changed his life forever. He fell nearly 50 feet from a building onto a pile of reinforced steel, causing severe nerve damage in his left arm that resulted in an amputation. He remembers the accident vividly and is grateful to have come out of it alive.
“Before I fell, I was hanging on and thought I was screaming for help, yet no words were coming out,” recalls Lionel. “And when I landed I noticed my head was only inches away from some sharply pointed steel. I should have died that day, but luckily I’m still here. Sometimes I feel that I was put on this earth for a reason.”
With all of the trauma and difficulty Lionel has been through in his life, his positivity has been a constant inspiration to the people around him, especially staff at Chartwell Heritage Glen. Giving up has never been an option for Lionel, and to him, perseverance is everything.
Due to the impact that Lionel has made on his retirement community, staff decided to organize an event to recognize all that he has overcome throughout the years. With cake, pictures and supportive speeches from staff members, Lionel describes the event as simply amazing.
Brooke, Chartwell Heritage Glen’s Lifestyle and Programs Manager, was proud to acknowledge Lionel’s perseverance.
“He’s normally a very chatty man, but he was left speechless by this event. It was so touching to be a part of it. Lionel is a true inspiration to all of us and it was important to acknowledge him at our residence.”
All across Canada, Chartwell Retirement Residences provides residents with fulfilling, engaging Moments that celebrate what matters to them the most. To learn more about our Moments that Matter program, click here.