Keeping a damaged brain alive may be the greatest act of friendship.
"He's a one-man army," Hardt interjects.
Curcio receives no benefits. He pays $300 per month for his own health coverage.
Last summer, Curcio and Hardt were members of the 26-person steering committee of the Pennsylvania Campaign for a Consumer Workforce Council. The campaign is pushing for a state mandate that would provide seniors and people with disabilities the ability to direct their own care in their own homes. It would also push for better wages and benefits for PCAs.
"If PCAs got benefits and a decent salary, they'd actually want to work," Curcio argues.
The steering committee delivered a proposal to the State Secretary of Labor and Industry in September. The response has not been positive.
Their constant connection has strained their relationship at times. Neither dates much, as it takes a certain personality to not be threatened by the intense bond between the two.
Their working relationship, however, is likely to end soon.
Curcio is exhausted.
"I cannot afford the stress of this anymore," he says. "I need help."
He won't leave Hardt in the hands of someone who isn't committed.
"I have to make sure he's always safe," Curcio tells me. "That's why the Consumer Workforce Council is so important."