PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A new fitness center officially opened for business Monday in Homestead.
However, it’s not your everyday gym.
Just over a year ago, life changed for Richard Kuzma.
He lost his sight after a glaucoma surgery and has had to relearn everyday tasks like cooking, cleaning and exercising.
It hasn’t been easy, but he’s thankful he now has a new place to work out.
“This is probably the only place I’d go, I’d feel comfortable with right now because you have to learn the equipment, get somebody to help you,” Kuzma said.
The equipment is marked for the visually impaired and there are blue braille signs describing the equipment.
The center is in Homestead at Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services of Pittsburgh, which is a private non-profit that offers programs and services to those who are blind or visually impaired.
“We are just so excited. This is something that was kind of a dream, so to see it come together, I think it’s going to provide opportunities for individuals that just didn’t exist before,” BVRS President Erika Arbogast said.
The center is named after Michael Romano, a man who has dedicated two decades to working with the non-profit.
“You’re happy when you get a nameplate at work, so to get a fitness center named after you, it’s pretty exciting,” Romano said.
“He has been an asset to this agency like none other. He has just been imperative to our success and growth and has been a board member for many, many years and also serving as the chair of the board,” Arbogast said.
Before today’s ribbon cutting, the staff poured a lot of work into getting this center ready.
“We had to redo this entire area. It actually had walls up and we had to remove those and purchase all the equipment and get the wheelchair lift put in,” Arbogast said.