A brother’s fate with Cerebral Palsy inspires a life of research therapy

David Embry-webBy David Knopf/Richmond News

David Embry remembers how Tom Adams, his late football coach and friend, supported him when his father died.

“You know, David, you’re your father’s legacy now,” Adams said in a phone call after C.L. Embry, a former Richmond school administrator, passed away in 2005.

“That’s what I really needed to hear at that time,” his former student said.

The 1969 Richmond graduate works with Cerebral Palsy, stroke and Muscular Dystrophy patients to develop the movements others take for granted. Adams would be gratified to hear that Embry and a fellow motion researcher at a Shriner’s Hospital in Lexington, Ky., invented a therapeutic device in 2010 called the Gait MyoElectric Stimulator.

In an article published in January, The Puyallup Herald explained the GMES “helps stroke victims walk again by sending signals from a patient’s strong foot to trigger electrical stimulation for the muscles of the opposite weak leg.”

Embry has since developed a more advanced prototype, the GMES II, with the help of a professor of physical therapy in Maryland and a Boeing electrical engineer.

The work he and his therapy team do at Good Samaritan Children’s Therapy Unit in Washington was recently featured in a “Health Heroes” segment on the Discovery Channel. Embry is hoping the exposure will attract national investors to help market the innovative technology.

(The segment can be viewed on You Tube at

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