Former Restaurant Owner’s Road to Recovery Leads to Monthly RV Trips

July 30, 2018

After suffering two mini strokes in December 2017, Verdon Daubens knew the road to recovery would be challenging. But having a skilled team of therapists at Verdon’s side to lead him proved to be the encouragement he needed.

“Verdon has always done everything he wanted to do,” said Chelsa, Verdon’s wife for nearly 59 years. “Life after a stroke is a big adjustment, and it seemed that nothing I would do or say made a difference in Verdon’s spirit to improve.”

Chelsa told Hugo Dahlstrom, Mercy occupational therapist, she felt Verdon was depressed and overwhelmed with the journey ahead. As an occupational therapist, Hugo is trained to help people recover from injury to improve their ability to perform daily activities and reach the goals.

“Hugo was like an angel on earth,” Chelsa said. “He’s a tall man, but he got down on his hands and knees if front of Verdon’s lift chair and looked him eye-to-eye. In the most kind and compassion way, yet assertive and sincere, Hugo was able to spark a fire that motivated Verdon.”

“Recovery after stroke can take a long time, and persistence is the key,” Hugo said. “Verdon was very, very persistent. Whether at home or in the clinic, Verdon worked hard and did his best with everything I asked him to do. That hard work clearly paid off.”

Verdon and Chelsa enjoy taking vacations in their motorhome, so one of Verdon’s goals was to be able to drive and go on vacation once a month. Five months have passed and they haven’t missed a trip yet, and they have trips booked through November 2018.

The road to recovery wasn’t easy. Verdon’s therapy began with Mercy Home Health then he transitioned to outpatient therapy at Mercy Health for Life where he received occupational, physical and speech therapy six hours a week for six weeks.

Today, the Daubens’ spend time enjoying a slower pace by reading, working in the yard and planning their next RV adventure.

“We’ve learned that it’s important to enjoy every day,” Verdon said. There is not time for burnout or to be depressed. Lean on the support of your family, children and have faith in the Lord.”

“We are very happy with the simpler life we live,” said Chelsa. “It’s just the two of us doing what we like to do.”


Following two mini strokes, Verdon Daubens works on fine motor skills with Mercy occupational therapist Hugo Dahlstrom.

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