, who suffered a stroke Saturday, remains in serious condition today at Northwestern Memorial Hospital despite making progress, according to Dr. Richard Fessler, the neurosurgeon who is treating him.
“Senator Kirk is progressing as expected and we continue to be hopeful about his long term prognosis,” Fessler said. “He remains in serious condition and is being monitored closely.”
As of Tuesday, Fessler reported Kirk . He was also talking then, responding to questions and even asked for his cell phone, according to Fessler.
On Tuesday, Kirk’s family thanked people for their good wishes including President Barack Obama, Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Springfield), Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Governor Patrick Quinn and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
"We are overwhelmed by the outpouring of support we've received over the last couple of days,” the family said in a prepared statement issued by Kirk’s office.
The family singled out Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) in particular. “Words cannot describe how much Joe Manchin's friendship and support means to us and especially to Mark,” the statement said. “We are truly blessed to have such amazing family and friends."
Kirk and Manchin, who entered the Senate about the same time, have been regular lunch partners. They had planned to sit together at the State of the Union address Tuesday.
Kirk checked himself into Lake Forest Hospital Saturday, where doctors discovered a carotid artery dissection in the right side of his neck, according to a release issued Monday by Kirk’s office. He was transferred to Northwestern Memorial Hospital where further tests revealed that he had suffered an ischemic stroke.