Mark Roseman's Story

Rehabilitation ignites inner strength in burn survivor

Working for the Public Lighting Department of Detroit, Mark Roseman says he’s blessed to be alive after a horrible accident.

“I was underground when a 24-kilovolt cable exploded.  It knocked me to the ground and a flash fire engulfed me.  The only thing I had on to protect me, were my electrical gloves. Fortunately, my partner heard what happened and dropped a ladder down so I could climb out,” said Mark.

When he got to the top, he had second and third degree burns over more than half his upper body and face.  He was taken to DMC Detroit Receiving Hospital where he was put into a medically-induced coma for three weeks.  During that time, Mark had multiple skin grafts from his legs to transplant healthy skin on his burned chest and arms.

“When I woke up, I was in a lot of pain. I couldn’t open my mouth wide enough to talk well, I couldn’t lift my arms and I couldn’t walk. Despite my condition, on-site therapists from DMC Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan (RIM) started working to get me talking and moving again.”

Three weeks later, Mark was transferred to an inpatient unit at RIM, where therapists stepped up his rehab and helped him with range of motion, standing, walking and speaking clearly.

“I was really excited to continue my therapy at RIM. My therapists knew exactly how to handle someone with burns.  They pushed me but were also aware of my limitations.  I was surprised at how quickly I progressed.”

Mark went home three weeks later walking with a walker, able to shoot a basketball and talking better. He continued with his speech therapy for several more months, and began working on an engineering degree which he will soon finish at the University of Michigan-Dearborn all while taking care of his two kids.