The Story of Derrick Redcay

Derrick fighting fires
Derrick fighting a fire, April 2014


On April 24, 2014 life changed for the Redcay family.  18 year-old Muhlenberg High School senior Derrick Redcay suffered a rare stroke to his spinal cord. The stroke severed his spinal cord nerves at the C4-C6 area.  As a result, Derrick had no sensations or movement below his neck.

He was a member of the high school varsity baseball team, the Alsace Lutheran Church Youth Group, and was a member of the National Technical Honor Society, earned by maintaining a 3.5 GPA since the 9th grade. Derrick was also a volunteer firefighter with the Goodwill Fire Company, helping out at a 5-alarm blaze in the township less than 24 hours before he was stricken. Derrick had been accepted to the University of New Haven to study Fire Science.

Derrick working with Senator Swank
Derrick working with Senator Swank

Derrick has officially been employed with Senator Schwank’s office since October 2015. He answers phones and works on the “Good Citizenship” Awards for school and helps the constituents with anything they need! The family is so grateful to everyone at the Senator’s office for allowing Derrick to work there. He has an amazing boss and they always joke around when he is working.

He has been using the Stim bike three times a week to help keep his legs toned. He also continues to work hard at therapy and we can see some improvement in his left wrist strength and pronation–he is able to keep his left wrist palm down for a longer period of time! He has been working hard with his therapists and at home.  He is starting to see some results!

Thank you all for the kindness that all of you have shown! The family has been able to purchase this equipment to help Derrick gain some independence.

Life Rolls On
Derrick with the amazing volunteers!

Life Rolls On - 1






Derrick has been keeping busy this past summer!  He was able to participate in “LIFE ROLLS ON” and surf!  Words can not describe the look on his face when he was able to get back into the ocean that he loved as a child!

Life Rolls On - 3
Riding the Waves!
Life Rolls On -2
Catching another wave!

Coach Derrick


Derrick also was able to help to coach the Mulhlenberg Athletics Senior Legion boys team.  Enjoyed spending time with the kids and his fellow coaches! 

Coaching the A's - 2 Coaching the A's

Derrick’s family is so proud of his strength and determination!
Thank you everyone for remaining Redcay Strong!

The Redcay family needs our prayers and support.  Any donation for this wonderful family would go a long way towards helping them cope with this tragedy. The Derrick Redcay Special Needs Trust has been set up to assist with the ongoing expenses related to the support and care of Derrick and his family.


Thank you for your continued support and please remain REDCAY STRONG!

The Redcay Family & Committee

Important Announcement

The Redcay family is deeply touched by the outpouring of support for Derrick and his family. They appreciate all that you are doing to contribute to Derrick’s medical and long-term needs!

In order to protect the communities efforts, and the family from scams or false fundraisers, a “Redcay Strong” committee has been created. This committee is comprised of specific officials from the Berks County Community including:

  • The Goodwill Fire Department
  • Alsace Lutheran Church
  • The Temple Fire Department
  • The Central Fire Department
  • The Muhlenberg Police Department
  • The Muhlenberg School District
  • The Reading School District
  • and other interested parties

This committee was selected from willing members of the community and endorsed by the Redcay family. The committee created guidelines which will be used for events that are designed to help the Redcay Strong efforts in the best way possible. Failure to follow these procedures could impede future fundraising efforts, which are necessary to fund Derrick’s recovery.

The committee treasurer, along with the Fire Company and Church officials are responsible for collecting any donations and ensuring they are turned into the Redcay Strong Fund. All fundraising efforts, or the use of the Redcay Strong logos and trademarks require prior authorization from the committee.

Please contact the committee with ideas and to coordinate your efforts in supporting the Redcay Strong Fund:

Again, the Redcay family sincerely appreciates all that is being done to support Derrick as he begins his journey to recovery; and the Redcay Strong Committee thanks you as well!


The Redcay Strong Committee

All your information about Derrick Redcay