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Philadelphia, Pa Magee Rehabilitation Hospitala U.S News&World Report Best Hospital, will honor local Paralympics Bronze Medalist, Laura Schwanger, at a rooftop cookout on top of the hospital on Friday, September 26 at 12:30 pm. The cookout is part of Magee's National Rehabilitation Week celebration, which honors those devoted to rehabilitation and those who have benefited from it.

Schwanger, who resides in Elkins Park, brought home the bronze medal for the arms-only singles rowing event during the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing. The medal is Schwanger's twelfth.

"I have four gold from Korea, three sliver and a bronze from Barcelona, and three silver from Atlanta," said Schwanger, who was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis while serving in the Army in 1981. "But they were for track and field events. The Paralympics in Beijing were my first as a rower, and I'm proud of my bronze medal."

Although Schwanger was never a patient at Magee, she credits the hospital with introducing her to wheelchair sports.

"Through Magee, I learned about wheelchair sports. Within their sports program, I participated in track and field, softball and swimming and then branched out to other programs, even slide hockey," said Schwanger.

"We're proud of all of our wheelchair athletes," said Magee's Director of Public Relations, Kerry O'Connor. "But when someone like Laura comes along, who exemplifies all we try to do-- helping people regain their independence and help them follow their passions and interests--we felt it was important to acknowledge her so others might be inspired."

Magee Rehabilitation Hospital, founded in 1958, is a 96-bed specialty medical rehabilitation hospital providing physical and cognitive rehabilitation services. Magee’s flagship facility is located in Center City Philadelphia. In addition to the main campus that offers comprehensive services for spinal cord injury, brain injury, stroke, orthopedic replacement, amputation, pain management and work injury, Magee provides an expanding out-patient network serving the surrounding communities. In 1985, Magee’s brain injury rehabilitation program became the first in the nation to be accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities. Magee partnered with Jefferson Hospital to create one of the nation’s 14 federally designated centers for spinal cord injury rehabilitation. Magee has been rated one of America’s leading rehabilitation hospitals by U.S. News&World Report. Magee provides treatment to more than 5,000 individuals annually. Magee is authorized to treat wounded military personnel returning from war. Magee is not an Obligated Group Affiliate.


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Kim Shrack
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Magee Rehabilitation Hospital
1513 Race Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
(215) 587-3363