On June 19, 2020, Rev. Jeff Windt suffered a stroke caused by a blood clot in his carotid artery. After two weeks in the ICU at Greenville Memorial Hospital, and several weeks of rehabilitation at Roger C. Peace, he is now recovering at home with his wife and children.
ATTN: Jeff Windt
Second Presbyterian Church
105 River Street
Greenville, SC 29601
I wanted to give you all an update on Jeff’s progress. I will focus on his Speech Therapy in this article. Jeff has Broca’s Aphasia and Acquired Apraxia.
The Apraxia affects his oral motor skills which prevents him from being able to physically say letters, sounds and words.
Right now Jeff can say around 8-10 words. If you ask him a question he will probably respond with “Yes”. We are working on “No”, which is a word of equal importance.
The Aphasia prevents him from being able to come up with the right words he is trying to say.
His Speech Therapist describes it like this; All of the knowledge that he has is like the inside of a file box. Before the stroke it was organized. The stroke caused those files to be taken out of the file box, thrown all over the place, and then put back into the file box without organizing them. This affects his ability to speak, text, and write. No matter the way in which he is trying to communicate, the Apraxia prevents him being able to come up with the words that he is trying to get out.
Right now he is able to get his point across by texting or writing 1-2 words. Sometimes these words aren’t the exact word he is trying to say but it is correlated.
One very important thing I want you all to know is that even with these disorders they have not affected his intelligence. He can understand everything that you tell him, he just has a hard time responding back.
Since his stroke, Jeff has a lighthearted and optimistic attitude and outlook for the future. This is a huge answer to prayer. From the very beginning I have been asking for prayer specifically for his overall state of mind so that he would have the drive to face recovery. My prayers have been answered in a way I never thought possible. If you know Jeff then you know that this personality change is nothing short of a miracle . I joke but I am being totally serious. This is truly super-natural.
We are so grateful to all of you who have reached out to him in person as well as texting, writing, and FaceTime. Keep it coming!
There is very compelling evidence that shows Social Interaction is a crucial factor in a person’s recovery from a stroke.
The more interaction he has, the more his communication skills will improve.
It’s about more than improving his communication skills though. Social interaction is detrimental to his mental and physical health.
This is where you can help.
If you just come up and talk to us, come by for a visit or send Jeff a text these are all ways you can give Jeff the support and encouragement that he needs.
When talking to him in person just talk to him how you normally would. He will respond back the best way he can. I am there with him so I will help out here and there if I need to.
As far as texting goes, the good thing is he is able to text more words than he can say. He will usually respond back with one or two words. Sometimes he is able to get the right words out but sometimes not. If he doesn’t type the response you think he meant that’s ok. Don’t let that deter you from reaching out. He’s not going to make any progress if he doesn’t have an opportunity to try. He loves to hear from his friends. It doesn’t even have to be an open ended conversation. You can just text him about what’s going on in your life.
Like I said, you don’t have to change how you talk to Jeff. Talk to him about the things you normally would. Another wonderful thing about the change in his personality is that he doesn’t get easily frustrated in his attempts to communicate back. Please don’t refrain from reaching out because you aren’t sure how to approach us or you’re afraid you might say some-thing wrong. We’ve never done this before either! You’re in good company!
I would like to, again, thank those of you who have been so faithful in reaching out to us in any way that you can. It means more than you know.
God Bless you all for your thoughts and prayers
If you have seen Jeff at Second Presbyterian Church on Sundays and Wednesdays you know he continues to make a lot of progress with his right side. He has also started using his walker a lot more. His right arm is a little slower in progression but with more therapy, it will start regaining strength as well. Unfortunately, insurance will not pay for any more home therapy. They will pay for 30 sessions (about 10 days worth) of outpatient therapy.
Please pray Jeff would be able to take more outpatient therapy and that he will make great improvements with his speech.
Jeff is making great improvements physically. Continue praying that he would increasingly be able to communicate, read, and write. Pray for his wife and children as the school year begins online.
During speech therapy, Jeff was able to correctly type and answer multiple-choice questions about his life on the iPad. Pray his speech would improve and also that he would soon be able to communicate via typing. Jeff was able to get out of his chair and onto the bed with minimal assistance. He was also able to move his right leg. Pray he will regain physical strength and the ability to do more on his own.
In preparation for his forthcoming transition to in-home and outpatient care, Mariah was able to accompany Jeff in person during his therapy today.
Jeff had a great today but we also received some amazing news. They decided today that they expect Jeff to be there for another 2 weeks. The great news is that Mariah will be able to be there (in person) during his therapy sessions a few times a week before he gets discharged. Please be praying that he makes as much progress there as he can in the next couple of weeks. When he does come home there will still be home care and plenty of outpatient therapy so please continue to pray.
Therapists said that Jeff’s eyesight seems to be great. He is able to make out words with cards and pictures. His physical state is improving as well. He is able to wheel himself in a wheelchair on his own without help. They said that he probably still has some brain swelling but it will gradually diminish. So it’s possible that certain motor skills will come back once all of the swelling has gone down. Pray for this.
Jeff was transferred to the Roger C. Peace rehab facility today. Please be praying for the recovery process and that God will give him the push and the drive to get through the time that he is there. The short time that he is there is crucial to what he will be able to do long term in the way of walking and talking.
Occupational therapy went great today. Physical therapy also went great. They worked with him and moving his right leg and standing/walking with assistance.
Let me give another update on Jeff. The Lord is glorifying Himself through answers to our prayers. The ventilator has been taken out and all went well. The next prayer is that he would soon be able to leave the ICU for a room that would permit more rehabilitation. I had a really encouraging video call with Jeff today. I am reading through J. C. Ryle’s daily devotional, along with Scripture reading, and a daily University of Michigan recruiting update (we had a good day yesterday in both football and basketball and Jeff was pleased.) Pray that the Lord would keep Jeff’s spirits up, facing a pretty stark reality of his present condition. And please pray for God to restore his speech and give him signs of encouragement and progress in this. Jeff’s spirits were really good today, but it would be a great struggle for any of us and it definitely is for our friend. And pray for Mariah and their three boys. It is going to be a long haul for all of them, so we will need to carry them along in prayer. The Lord says, “Ask, and you shall receive.” He glorifies His power and mercy by sending answers to our prayers.
Jeff’s breathing tube was successfully removed, and he is breathing on his own! Praise God from whom all blessings flow!
Dear Second Church,
Jeff Windt had a stable night but today is a critical day. Jeff will have a CT scan this afternoon at 3 PM. Continue to pray that the swelling of his brain would not become severe during this time.
“the prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working” (James 5:16)
Dear Second Church,
Jeff Windt had an MRI today that has clarified his situation. The blood clot was caused by a tear to his carotid artery. He has had a severe stroke which looks to affect the right side of his body. He remains on a ventilator but was responsive this evening. The doctor was able to give him some simple commands that Jeff was able to follow. This gives us hope that his cognitive function is not severely injured. The chief prayer need for the next couple of days is that the swelling on his brain would subside.
Thank you for calling out with love to the throne of our gracious Father. David said in Psalm 34:4, “I sought the Lord and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears.” Lamentations 3:22 reminds us, “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases.” We can rely on that love for Jeff’s well-being.
Please continue to pray for Mariah and for Jonah, Elijah, and Jude. Pray as well for Jeff’s parents, who are traveling down from Michigan. Especially, please pray fervently for Jeff to weather the next forty-eight hours without severe brain swelling. Mariah plans to facetime with Jeff this evening, so pray for God’s sweet blessing on this electronic reunion. Mariah is holding up well, resolving to set an example of courage and faith for her children. Pray for the Lord to uphold her in this difficult hour, and to answer the fervent prayers of her loving heart.
Yours in Christ,
Dear Second Church,
Please be in fervent prayer for our dear friend, that useful servant of our Lord, Jeff Windt. The latest news has been worrisome. Jeff has had a stroke. He is intubated and sedated, with a large clot in his carotid artery that the medical staff has not been able to operate on. Another concern is swelling in his brain.
We know that our prayers are heard by a sovereign, loving God, and that His eye is on His dear child Jeff Windt. So we can pray with special confidence, knowing that He is wise and holy in all His ways. Please pray for Mariah and the children, who are not permitted to be in the hospital. I know that you will pray and that the bond of love we share together as God’s people will make our prayers swift and powerful.
Yours in Christ,
Update on Pastor Windt
Pastor Windt is being treated for a blocked carotid artery. After his initial evaluation he will be moved for further treatment and testing at Greenville memorial hospital. At this time, there are no signs of deficits. Please continue to pray for Mariah and the boys. No visitors at this time.
Please pray for Pastor Jeff Windt, who is in the emergency room at Greer hospital. He was taken to the hospital in an ambulance and is being treated for a possible stroke. Pray for Jeff, Mariah, and the boys. Mariah is not allowed in the hospital because of COVID-19, so please do not call her tonight as she is seeking to get information.