San Rafael resident Dieter Zander marked an important occasion on Feb. 4.
It's been five years since he had a stroke that caused him to lose most of his speech and partial use of his right hand.
As a musician and public speaker for a living — he was as a musical director and pastor — the stroke was a devastating blow and forced him to reinvent himself.
Zander, who lived in Novato at the time and now lives in San Rafael, slowly regained part of his speech and converses well now, although he's not back to full speed. During his recovery, he found that photography and videography helped him communicate in a way he hadn't fully tapped in his previous life. Novato Patch played a very small part in his ability to reestablish himself professionally by showcasing his work. Since then he has solidified his photography business and works at Trader Joe's in Corte Madera.
We congratulate Dieter on this day and share a few of his videos from the Patch archive. Also, we invite you to peruse his photo gallery and support him by buying his new book, A Stroke of Grace, co-written by LaDonna Witmer.
"This book chronicles my journey of grace," he writes on his website, "and it is my hope that in my photographs, you will see and hear and feel the things I cannot find the words to say."
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