Jeopardy! helps Courtenay stroke survivor learn to read again

WatchA Courtenay stroke survivor is making an inspiring recovery with the help of Alex Trebek and Jeopardy, which he watches right here on CHEK.

Joel Rosenau could be Alex Trebek’s number one fan.

“Oh he’s like family,” said Joel.

“I just think of him as a really close friend.”

Trebek and his quiz show Jeopardy! have helped the retired teacher as he recovers from a near-fatal stroke.

 Jeopardy! is teaching the stroke survivor how to read again.

“I love it,” said Joel.

“It’s really exciting to learn something for sort of the first time.”

The 76-year old Courtenay man suffered three back-to-back strokes last September, losing sight in an eye, and parts of his memory.

“And that was very frustrating for him,” said Joel’s wife Yvonne Rosenau.

According to his wife of 54 years, Joel has made an incredible recovery ever since.

“That he was able to come through this was like a miracle,” said Yvonne.

“Each day he would get better.”

Thanks in good part to what her husband considers his job to relearn what’s been lost.

He does it with the help of his inspiration, Alex Trebek, the host of Jeopardy! who himself is battling stage 4 pancreatic cancer.

“An inspiration that this is what you do if you’ve got so much time in your life left,” Rosenau said about Trebek.

“And that’s how I feel too,” he said.

Rosenau’s method is to pause the Jeopardy! clues and meticulously sound out the letters to what he’s seeing before him.

Then he memorizes the words.

So the retired teacher is teaching himself, all over again.

“I go, ‘Yvonne look what I did,'” said Joel.

“Each jump has been a reason to celebrate,” said Yvonne.

And remarkably, Joel Rosenau, has come to be almost grateful for the stroke that has him learning with the zeal of a kid again.

Now reading at a grade one level, Rosenau said with the help of his host in high places, he hopes to be reading grade six levels words by summer.

The next Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time airs tonight at 8 p.m. on CHEK. 


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