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Former patient helps put on Bills tailgate at McAuley Residence

It was his way of saying 'thank you' to a staff that helped him start to get his life back to normal, after he had a stroke earlier this year.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — When 57-year-old Andy Rondinelli came to Catholic Health's McAuley Residence in June, he wasn't able to walk at all. 

He had a stroke earlier in the year and still has a ways to go before he's back to normal, but he's finding a way to say 'thank you' to those who helped him along the way.

Rondinelli brought his Kona Ice truck over to the McAuley Residence to give away free snow cones at a Bills tailgate there. 

"I was here for eight weeks, maybe over eight weeks. And these people were, it's going to bring tears to my eyes. They were so good and so caring and they pushed me," Rondinelli said.

"Oh he makes me cry almost every time I treat him because he's so happy and he's so appreciative and he wants it so bad," said Laura Wright, Rondinelli's physical therapist. 

Rondinelli also showed some kindness amidst all the excitement for the Bills' first game of the year to send an important reminder to other patients at McAuley.

"I thought maybe it's a good idea so people can see that you can bounce back from something like that. I don't know how much further I'm going to go. I'm not going to be happy until I'm walking around with no walker," Rondinelli said. 

His physical therapist is sure he'll get there because of his determination and heart.  

"He's the reason why we do what we do so it's very validating for everybody who works in the homecare and healthcare field to have somebody like him truly," Wright said. 

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