By Joe Rutherford
U.S. Rep. Alan Nunnelee, R-Miss., announced Friday he is returning to Mississippi for the first time since early summer when he suffered a stroke while having brain surgery.
Nunnelee spokeswoman Elizabeth Parks said Friday he would return to his Tupelo residence and continue physical rehabilitation to help him recover from residual damage caused by the stroke. He had been taking therapy as an outpatient at Johns Hopkins Medical Center in Baltimore.
Parks indicated Nunnelee will continue following doctors’ orders related to his rehabilitation.
It’s not known when he might return to Washington and take his seat in the House chamber.
Nunnelee, 55, is seeking a third term in Congress in the Nov. 4 general election and is opposed by Democratic nominee Ron Dickey of Horn Lake and two other candidates.
He was diagnosed with a brain tumor earlier this year and while undergoing surgery for it at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, on June 9 suffered a serious stroke. He has said it caused speech and mobility issues, which have been the focus of his rehabilitation.
In a statement released Friday morning, Nunnelee said:
“My recent illness has caused me to be hospitalized for an extended period and unfortunately, it has physically separated me from the places and people I dearly love. My medical team says I have made significant progress, and in their expert opinion, I am now ready to return to my beloved Mississippi for the remainder of my outpatient stroke rehabilitation.
“I am anxious to thank each of you in person because I have seen the power of your prayers firsthand, just as we are reminded in James 5:16, ‘Pray for one another, that you might be healed and restored. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”
Parks indicated earlier that updates on Nunnelee’s progress will be issued as warranted.