Months after major stroke, Illinois US Sen. Mark Kirk climbs Willis Tower stairs

U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk was met with hugs and cheers as he reached the finish line of a popular stair climbing event at the Willis Tower.

Kirk, taking part in a charity fundraiser called "Skyrise Chicago" was making his first public appearance since suffering a major stroke in January.

He did not the climb all 103 floors Sunday, but started on the building's 66th floor and climbed to the 103rd floor.

Wearing a brace on his left leg, Kirk held onto the railing during his ascent. His progress was monitored by a physical therapist, who said Kirk did not need any assistance.

The 53-year-old has been releasing videos on his progress, including footage of his working with therapists and climbing stairs. He continues to undergo rehabilitation.