Video Tour

Discover how Gaylord's setting provides a restorative, healing environment for our patients and their families. For details and videos about specific programs see the individual program pages.

Deep River athlete with spinal cord injury ready to take on Gaylord Gauntlet in Wallingford

Wednesday, Jun 21, 2023

The Middletown Press
By Andrea Valluzzo

DEEP RIVER — Natalie Matarazzo of Deep River may only be 19, but she has already faced a gauntlet and is about to take on another.

One moment she was a high school senior, and, in the blink of an eye, her life changed after a car crash in October 2020 left her with a spinal cord injury and no feeling below her chest. Today, after much intensive therapy at Gaylord Specialty Healthcare that is still ongoing, she has regained some feeling, mobility and independence.

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The Gaylord Gauntlet 5K: Promoting Health, Function and Fitness

Friday, Jun 16, 2023

Channel 8 CT Style June 16, 2023 New Haven, Conn. (WTNH) – The Gaylord Gauntlet is coming up on Saturday, June 24th. It’s a 5k trail and obstacle run that raises funds for Connecticut’s largest adaptive sports program. To discuss this exciting event, CT Style Host Natasha Lubczenko got together with Katie Joly, Program Manager of Gaylord Sports Association, and Natalie Matarazzo, Featured Adaptive Athlete participating in this year’s Gaylord Gauntlet. Katie tells our viewers about the event, “It’s a 5k obstacle mud run. It features 24 different obstacles, everything from walls to climb over mud pits, rope walks, even a huge water slide at the end. We also have a festival area with food trucks and music, so it is a super fun day for...
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Beating the odds: Wallingford woman severely injured in crash chosen as Gaylord Gauntlet’s featured adaptive athlete

Friday, Jun 16, 2023

WTNH News Channel 8
By Kathryn Hauser
June 15, 2023

WALLINGFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — A Wallingford woman was unsure if she would ever walk again after being injured in a horrific car accident in 2020 at just 17, but now two-and-a-half years later, she is beating the odds.

Natalie Matarazzo, 19, was chosen as this year’s featured adaptive athlete of the Gaylord Gauntlet 5K and Obstacle Run on Saturday, June 24, at Gaylord Hospital in Wallingford.

More than 1,000 runners and 22 adaptive athletes are expected to compete in a race promoting health, function, and fitness held on the hospital’s 400 acres.

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Trumbull stroke survivor mentors others with brain injuries

Wednesday, Jun 07, 2023

CT Insider
By Andy Tsubasa
June 4, 2023

TRUMBULL — Nearly two decades after a hockey accident led to a torn neck artery and subsequent stroke, a town resident is a leading volunteer helping others to overcome their own brain injuries.

Last month, Garrett Mendez, 36, received the Hamden Regional Chamber of Commerce's "Healthcare Warrior Award" for his volunteer work at the Gaylord Specialty Healthcare hospital in Wallingford. 

Mendez suffered the brain-stem stroke in 2005, days after colliding head-first with the boards while playing in a junior hockey game in Springfield, Mass.

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A CT woman can’t walk or communicate without help. She’s adding to this list of achievements

Tuesday, Jun 06, 2023

Hartford Courant
By Pamela McLoughlin
June 6, 2023

Margaret “Meg” Moore can’t walk, stand or tend to activities of daily living on her own and she relies on an assistive device for communication.

Yet, the 26-year-old from Middlebury has already accomplished more than many people will in a lifetime – and she keeps adding to the list.

“My positive attitude can definitely be attributed to my parents,” Moore wrote in an email. “My mother and my late father approached my life with a disability with a very positive outlook right from the beginning.”

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'Be a goldfish' and 16 more Ted Lasso lessons for hospital leaders

Friday, Jun 02, 2023

Becker's Hospital Review
By Bari Faye Dean
June 2, 2023

Executives looking for a way to enhance their own leadership style need look no further than Apple TV's Ted Lasso. Disguised as a show about a British football team, the series just might be a master class in leadership and management that could up any healthcare C-suite member's game


16 Hospital executives offer their lessons: 

Lesson 7: Everyone differs from everyone else.

Sonja LaBarbera. President and CEO at Gaylord Specialty Healthcare (Wallingford, Conn.)

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Westport woman shares recovery from rare Guillain-Barre Syndrome that left her paralyzed

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

News 12 Connecticut
By Marissa Alter
May 25, 2023

ess Branson, of Westport, had a busy career and an active social life. But in the spring of 2021, Branson's life "went from 60 to zero in a heartbeat" when she became unable to move.

It all began with a stomach bug. "Over time, I started to get numbness and tingling in my hands and my feet," Branson told News 12. She felt weak and lost sensation in her limbs, but despite numerous doctor and emergency room visits, Branson said she couldn't get any answers until she became paralyzed from the shoulders down.

"It felt surreal. I would look at my feet and say, 'Move,' and try and step and I could not move them or advance them forward.


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Wednesday’s Warrior: Nonprofit helps people with long-term impairments regain a sense of meaning

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

News Channel 8
By Alyssa Taglia
May 24, 2023

CHESHIRE, Conn. (WTNH) — The difference between just living and feeling alive and enjoying life is what a local nonprofit is doing to help people with long-term impairments from any injury or chronic condition get back to a meaningful life.

Exercise for Life aims for lifelong wellness.

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Former News 8 reporter LaSalle Blanks finds strength after stroke

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

News Channel 8
By Lisa Carberg
May 23, 2023

NORTH HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Reporter Lasalle Blanks covered Waterbury for News 8 like no one else.

With total passion and enthusiasm for telling stories, he also had a special way of highlighting the city’s youth doing great things. But, one day in 2021, Blank’s life changed forever.

“I couldn’t put any pressure on my left side, so I rolled over on my right and got out of bed, and when I tried to stand I literally started going like this,” Blanks said. “When you have a stroke, you don’t just collapse.”

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Seymour Resident Emily Clifford Honored with the Nightingale Award for Excellence in Nursing

Friday, May 12, 2023

WALLINGFORD, CONNECTICUT, May 12, 2023 — Gaylord Specialty Healthcare, a nonprofit rehabilitation-focused healthcare organization headquartered in Wallingford, is pleased to announce that Seymour resident and nurse Emily Clifford, RN, BSN, was honored with the Nightingale Award for Excellence in Nursing. One of Connecticut’s most prestigious nursing honors, the Nightingale Award annually recognizes nurses who go above and beyond the call of duty in various clinical and educational environments. Clifford cares for medically fragile patients at Gaylord Hospital who are recovering from life-altering illnesses and injuries. Her peers say that Clifford pours love into her practice and inspires everyone around her to do the same. “Emily is a dedicated nurse who provides compassionate care and is a role model to...
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