Sen. Kirk leaving rehab facility three months after suffering stroke

Doctors had said that Kirk's overall prognosis was good and that he would likely recover in a matter of weeks or months. Kirk's physicians, however, did caution that Kirk, 52, was likely to lose some motor function on the left side of his body but would be unaffected, mentally, from the stroke.

"We are happy to say that after suffering a stroke in January, Mark has progressed to the point where he can move home with his family," Kirk's family said in a statement. "He will continue to work on his recovery as an out-patient at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. He has begun a rigorous walking study program to further his mobility and independence while maintaining his schedule with staff."

Kirk stayed out of the public eye since his stroke, but a number of his friends and colleagues were allowed to visit him at Northwestern Memorial Hospital as his recovery progressed. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), a friend of Kirk's, flew to Chicago to visit the senator shortly after the junior senator from Illinois suffered the stroke.

"We are grateful for the wonderful doctors and personnel at the RIC for their care of Mark, and to the residents of Illinois who have given him privacy and time to heal," the statement from Kirk's family continues. "We also thank everyone who has shared their prayers and wishes for his return to the U.S. Senate as soon as possible.”

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