Four years ago, Shelli Snyder and Max Nemeth had their first date, a date that would set them on a path to a lifetime together. That first date was at the Greenhouse Tavern in downtown Cleveland.
Friday evening, they celebrated their fourth anniversary, but in a place neither could have imagined, the community room of the Diplomat Healthcare facility in North Royalton.
Snyder, a founding member of Bike Cleveland, a local cycling advocacy group, was severely injured on a cross-country cycling ride to be with her fiancé Nemeth in Seattle.
Snyder left Cleveland last summer and, in mid-September, was traveling through Montana when she was hit by a car at 65 mph.
Doctors in Kalispell, Mont. saved her life and started her on the road to recovery.
Flown to MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland weeks later, Snyder endured multiple surgeries. Medical procedures and rehabilitation have continued at MetroHealth until a couple of weeks ago.
Now at Diplomat Healthcare to continue her recovery, a special anniversary dinner was set in motion.
Nemeth flew in from Seattle.
The facility made arrangements to decorate the community room with an ambiance to recreate a restaurant setting. A Greenhouse Tavern sign was hung. A bicycle was brought in as fitting decoration.
There was a hostess station, and the only names on the reservation list for the evening were Snyder and Nemeth.
After being escorted to their table, the couple dined on the Pig’s Head dinner.
“We tried to order the Pig’s Head four years ago, but by the time we got there, they were all out,” Nemeth said.
“I’m doing really well, because of tonight especially,” Snyder said. “As long as I can start walking again without holding onto anything and riding my bike again, I’ll be happy.”