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Eddie DiDonato continues rehab: ‘I have learned patience … and about humility’

Wednesday, 21st April 2010

Categories Boy's/Men's, Features  

Editor’s Note: This is the second of a multi-part series on Blue Bell’s Eddie DiDonato, 23, the former La Salle College High and Villanova University lacrosse standout who is recovering from a shooting incident in Philadelphia

By Chris Goldberg, Posted 4/21/10

Eddie DiDonato walks with assistance from Magee Rehabilitation Hospital physical therapist Georgette Driskill

Eddie DiDonato had to accept the reality of being taken care of when he was first transferred to Magee Rehabilitation Hospital in March after spending six weeks in Jefferson University Hospital.

“I have learned patience and I have also learned humility,” DiDonato said of his recovery.

“Things that you take for granted and are used to doing by yourself were a problem for me. I was always used to doing everything on my own; but I had to have help for just about everything.

“Like I said about humility … there were many embarrassing moments – things I didn’t think I’d have to worry about until I was much older.”

DiDonato suffered six gunshot wounds during a Jan. 17 altercation in Philadelphia’s Old City. He spent 4 weeks on the critical list at Jefferson, with wounds to his liver, lungs, stomach, clavicle, spine and hand.

When DiDonato first arrived at Magee, activities of daily living, routine activities that people tend to do every day without assistance, needed to be done for him. Even with help, he could barely stand for seconds.

“Here (at Magee) in the beginning, the toughest thing was the frustration of not being able to complete rehab tasks,” he said. “They were simple things, like putting on my socks and even sweating while trying to put them on – then realizing, I couldn’t do it.

“It’s very humbling. You just really have to understand that you take one step at a time, there is no quick fix and people are there to help you.”

DiDonato continues to make steady progress and it’s how far he has come that pushes him to conquer his remaining physical challenge, the loss of feeling and limited use of his left foot, as a result of the injury to his spine.

“I can’t move my toes and sometimes I get nerve pains; they are like shocks through my leg and they go all the way down to the foot,” he said.

“I remember when it was first happening. I was lying in bed with pain going through my leg, and the burning feeling was so bad I was in agony. My doctor says that the nerves are re-growing and trying to communicate again. It’s a lot of pain, but at the same time, I know what’s going on – I’m getting better.”

Next: DiDonato continues his rehab at Magee

Previous posts:

Eddie DiDonato gives first interview: ‘The first thing I remember’ after the shooting

Alleged shooter of Philly lacrosse standout DiDonato is bound for court on charge of attempted murder

Lacrosse star Eddie DiDonato to give first interview since Philadelphia shooting

Best friend: DiDonato continues to make great recovery after ninth operation since Old City shooting

DiDonato remains in fair condition as recovery from weekend scare continues

Former Villanova captain DiDonato upgraded to fair condition after major scare caused by infection

DiDonato’s condition stabilizes after being moved back into Intensive Care; is downgraded to critical

DiDonato’s former teammate: ‘It’s pretty incredible how lucky and strong he’s been the past couple of days’

Best friend: DiDonato in good spirits after another round of surgery

Shooting victim DiDonato is upgraded to fair condition; few details known about incident as police continue investigation

Shooting victim DiDonato continues to recover after morning surgery

DiDonato update: Best friend says shooting victim is squeezing his hand and that his fight for life is a ‘miracle’

Contributing editor: Kristen Imperiale


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