About Syracuse Prosthetic Center
Putting 147 years of knowledge into every prosthesis we craft
Syracuse Prosthetic Center has a tradition of excellence that stretches back over five generations and two families.
In 1866 Chauncy A. Frees began making artificial limbs to help soldiers injured in the Civil War. In 1874 he received the first of many awards for excellence for his care.
The small family owned business continued to provide care over the years under the supervision of Mr. Frees' son and then his grandson, Chauncy W. Frees.
Then in 1943 Howard Tyo, a promising Olympic hopeful skater from Northern New York, lost his leg in Italy. During his convalescence he took a strong interest in his own recovery and showed an aptitude for prosthesis that was encouraged by his doctors.
He was soon assisting in the fitting of other veterans. He returned to New York and apprenticed in prosthetics under Chauncy W. Frees. Chauncy was so impressed with the young man's skill he took him on as a partner in 1952.
Howard took over the business when Chauncy retired in 1964 and soon became recognized nationally as one of the leaders in the field of prosthetics.
And, Howard began his own family tradition when his son John, our current director, became interested in the field at an early age and followed him into the business.
Under John Tyo's direction, the practice grew from a local facility to the 10th largest provider of orthotic and prosthetic services in the U.S. But John, driven by the need to provide more personal care, sold much of the company in 1996 and re-established a patient care facility here in Central New York in 1997.
Today along with his partner Sheila Harrington and senior prosthetist Gary Rivers, CP, John carries on the family-oriented nature of the center. A tradition that is sure to continue through the next generation of family with the help of John's own son Jeff Tyo and son-in-law Mike Mahar who are also active in the practice.
"I have been to many prosthetists since losing my leg. I am now in the most comfortable socket I have ever worn. I am able to wear my prosthesis for 16 hours a day without discomfort. When I am not working, I enjoy biking, hiking and canoeing." – Ron Hepler, Williamson
"I have an above knee amputation. I'm 89 years old and I use my prosthesis all day, every day. If I'm not a walking advertisement, there's no such thing! I highly recommend these folks to anybody." – Sidney Greenberg, Cazenovia, NY