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Father miraculously recovers: Oquawka man believed to be brain dead, wakes to talk to daughters
The Hawk Eye ^ | 11/26/2010 | NICHOLAS BERGIN

Posted on 12/03/2010 1:45:40 AM PST by iowamark

WEST BURLINGTON - God sometimes just has to show off.

That is the only way Penny Link and Shirley Martinez can explain the fact that their father, 84-year-old Gene Stotts, is alive and lucid.

"It had to be a miracle," Link said during an interview Thursday.

Only three days earlier, Stotts' family and friends believed him to be brain dead and had begun thinking about funeral arrangements.

The daughters and their father live only blocks from each other in Oquawka, Ill. But rather than spending Thanksgiving eating turkey at home, Stotts' family spent the day in the waiting room for the Intensive Care Unit of Great River Medical Center, a place they have become intimately familiar with over the past couple of weeks.

Their ordeal began Nov. 15. when Stotts called Martinez complaining of severe back pain.

Stotts, who owned and operated a grocery store in Oquawka for more than 20 years before retiring, had always been an active man. A generous and kind man, Stotts often helped out area families when money was tight, letting them charge groceries even when he knew a tab likely would never be repaid, Martinez said.

While his mobility declined in recent years, he still made a point of getting outside in his motorized chair to do his own yard work.

So when Stotts complained of pain, his daughter knew it was serious and called for an ambulance. The Oquawka Ambulance Service, which Stotts had supported years ago as a volunteer board member, soon arrived to rush him away, Martinez said.

At the hospital, doctors discovered Stotts suffered from an aortic aneurysm, which is a weakened and bulging area in the major blood vessel that carries blood away from the heart to the body. He spent the next four hours in surgery, said Stotts' granddaughter, Angelina Ingle, who also lives in Oquawka.

Given his age, the prospect of Stotts surviving didn't look good. During and after the surgery, he had to be given 17 pints of blood, causing doctors to worry about complications, Martinez said.

For days after the surgery, doctors kept Stotts sedated. All his family could do was wait to see if he would pull through.

Eventually, tests revealed the only portion of Stotts' brain that remained active was the part believed to control breathing, doctors told his family. The man they knew was gone, doctors said.

"We decided as a family, he wouldn't want to live like that,"Ingle said.

At the family's direction, hospital staff on Tuesday began unhooking Stotts from the many monitors and tubes running into his body. At about 5 p.m., they disconnected the ventilator that had been helping him breath.

Unable to bear the sound of their father's rasping breath, Link and Martinez went to the waiting room just outside the ICU to rest as they waited for their father to die.

Then at about 12:30 a.m., a nurse came to wake Martinez up.

"He (the nurse) said, 'I want you to come in here and see something'," Martinez said.

The nurse led Martinez into her father's room. Stotts was awake.

The nurse asked Stotts if he knew who Martinez was.

"He said, 'That's my daughter'," Martinez said.

She explained to her father where he was and what had happened.

Still not quite believing the unexpected turn of events, Martinez went to wake her sister.

Link at first thought she was dreaming when she saw her father awake.

"He asked me for an ice cream cone," Link said.

Still in shock, the women began calling and texting their family and friends to share the good news.

Upon hearing her grandfather had woken, Ingle said she immediately dropped her children at day care and rushed to the hospital.

"I thought I lost my opportunity to ever talk to him again. So when this happened, I thought, 'Even if this is a gift of just two minutes, I'm going to take everything I've got.' I think we all feel like that," she said.

In the hours after he woke, Stotts told his family he loved them and talked about seeing heaven saying it was "beautiful up there," Martinez said.

He also talked of his wife, Wonda, who died almost 20 years ago. Stotts said Wonda was in the room watching over him.

Martinez asked her father if he would be leaving with his wife.

" 'Not right now'," Martinez said he answered.

Stotts went back into surgery Wednesday so doctors could close the hole they had opened in his body to fix the aneurysm.

Thursday morning he was still unconscious, but doing well, family said.

Martinez credits God, doctors, GRMC staff and prayer for the miracle.

"God was the coach in this. Medical staff were the team, and family and friends were the fans cheering him on," Martinez said.

Amazed and looking for meaning in Stotts' miraculous recovery, family members turned to the Rev. Mark Baker, the pastor of Faith Bible Church in Oquawka where Stotts attends services regularly.

God sometimes just has to show off, Baker told them.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; US: Illinois
KEYWORDS: braindead; health; medical; miracle; prolife

1 posted on 12/03/2010 1:45:48 AM PST by iowamark
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To: iowamark

Its indeed a miracle. To put it simply, God decided it was not yet his time. We should be thankful this grandfather got more years to spend on earth with his loved ones!


2 posted on 12/03/2010 1:48:55 AM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: iowamark

So, “tests revealed” that he was brain-dead, eh?

Mmm, I loves me the smell of a lawsuit in the mornng ....

Look, I am not a litigation-happy person. But I hope the family will sue, for the sole reason that it will make doctors a lot less quick to write people off if they know they may have to justify a million-dollar lawsuit to the hospital they’re working for. I saw this cavalier attitude with my mom’s death. Some docs (not all, but enough to cause trouble) have a little God complex and want to decide for you when your life is “not worth living.” You know what? That is not the doctor’s call to make. They should have that lesson reinforced.


3 posted on 12/03/2010 1:53:11 AM PST by Hetty_Fauxvert (March 2010: Congress shoved Obamacare down our throats. November 2010: We will shove it back!)
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To: iowamark

Under Obamacare, he would already be soylent green.


4 posted on 12/03/2010 1:53:14 AM PST by HospiceNurse
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To: goldstategop; Quix; Alamo-Girl

Amen!


5 posted on 12/03/2010 1:53:34 AM PST by Arthur Wildfire! March (George Washington: [Government] is a dangerous servant and a terrible master.)
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To: iowamark; Salvation; trussell; Brad's Gramma; onyx; Lady Jag; trisham; Fiddlstix; GitmoSailor; ...

What a glorious miracle! Praise God!


6 posted on 12/03/2010 2:31:13 AM PST by bd476
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To: Pegita

There's a news story here about a glorious miracle. I think you will enjoy reading it if you haven't already heard about it.

Praise God!

7 posted on 12/03/2010 2:36:35 AM PST by bd476
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To: iowamark

Good thing he was 84 and did not have any harvestable organs, or he would have been toast. How many Quality Adjusted Life Years does this count for?


8 posted on 12/03/2010 3:15:21 AM PST by Haiku Guy (What we've got here is ... failure to communicate.)
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To: iowamark

Bookmark for times of doubt.


9 posted on 12/03/2010 3:16:01 AM PST by SoCal SoCon (Liberals whine. Conservatives act.)
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To: Hetty_Fauxvert
Look, I am not a litigation-happy person. But I hope the family will sue, for the sole reason...

That attitude adds 30-40% to every hospital bill in the nation as it is.

Sometimes miracles happen; so do accidents. Instead of contacting a lawyer, how about enjoying the few remaining weeks/months/years this man has?

I've witnessed many such 'miracles' through the years. I've seen some folks die for no apparent reason too. We are mere humans, the vast majority of us do the best we can. Sometimes we are doing God's work; sometimes we are interfering.

10 posted on 12/03/2010 3:35:09 AM PST by Islander7 (If you want to anger conservatives, lie to them. If you want to anger liberals, tell them the truth.)
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To: Hetty_Fauxvert
SUE, SUE,SUE, that is the answer for every liberal. Why do you think insurance premiums are so high. Don't worry, your hero Obama is going to take care of all that.
11 posted on 12/03/2010 3:46:46 AM PST by John D
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To: John D

True. I never knew a conservative to sue anybody.


12 posted on 12/03/2010 4:02:47 AM PST by BiggieLittle
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To: bd476
Thank you, bd ... what a joyful way to start the day :)

Job 12:10 ~ In His hand is the life of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind.

From Psalm 100 ~ “For the Lord is good, His mercy is everlasting, and His truth endures to all generations.”

I join with you ... Praise God!

13 posted on 12/03/2010 4:17:32 AM PST by Pegita ('Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus, just to take Him at His word ...)
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To: iowamark

There’s an additional miracle here. He’s 84 and in a chair, yet they found someone willing to operate on him for an aortic aneurysm.


14 posted on 12/03/2010 4:37:38 AM PST by 668 - Neighbor of the Beast (Looter guy, looter government.)
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To: John D
The organ transplant industry has apparently rigged the brain death criteria, so a suit here could serve the public interest.

In NY the organ transplanters recently contracted with 911 to swoop in and harvest accident victims before the families can get involved.

15 posted on 12/03/2010 4:39:45 AM PST by cmj328
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To: iowamark

God sometimes just has to show off, Baker told them.

&&&
What? This is a wonderful story, but anyone who attributes God’s miracles to “showing off”, a less than admirable human frailty, has much to learn about the ways of the Lord.
What a stupid way to describe God’s work.


16 posted on 12/03/2010 4:46:47 AM PST by Bigg Red (Palin/Hunter 2012 -- Bolton their Secretary of State)
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To: Islander7

Sometimes we are doing God’s work; sometimes we are interfering.

^^
Well said!


17 posted on 12/03/2010 4:49:07 AM PST by Bigg Red (Palin/Hunter 2012 -- Bolton their Secretary of State)
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To: iowamark

A miracle or a bad call by a tired resident working a lot of overtime on Thanksgiving week.


18 posted on 12/03/2010 4:50:20 AM PST by muir_redwoods (Obama. Chauncey Gardiner without the homburg.)
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To: goldstategop

Probably the nurse on duty stopped the incessent sedation that the hosptials/hospices are providing to elderly.


19 posted on 12/03/2010 4:51:24 AM PST by Chickensoup (In the Leftist protected species hierarchy, Islamics trump Homosexuals trump Women trump Blacks)
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To: iowamark

Praise the Lord for his goodness and for His wonderful works to the children of men!


20 posted on 12/03/2010 5:25:42 AM PST by Twinkie (Two wrongs don't make a right.)
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March; bd476
Praise God!!!
21 posted on 12/03/2010 5:32:45 AM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March

PRAISE GOD!

THX THX.

MAY HIS GLORY BE MULTIPLIED ABROAD IN THE LAND.


22 posted on 12/03/2010 6:00:58 AM PST by Quix (Times are a changin' INSURE you have believed in your heart & confessed Jesus as Lord Come NtheFlesh)
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To: cmj328

OMG THAT’S HORRIFYING! We now have motorized taxpayer funded VULTURES!


23 posted on 12/03/2010 7:23:42 AM PST by oprahstheantichrist (The MSM is a demonic stronghold, PLEASE pray accordingly - 2 Corinthians 10:3-5)
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To: bd476
A miracle indeed. What a wonderful, uplifting story. Praise the Lord!
24 posted on 12/03/2010 7:38:48 AM PST by afnamvet (Patriots Rising)
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To: iowamark
How fortunate this man was not executed by the State like Terry Shaivo was.
25 posted on 12/03/2010 7:41:18 AM PST by mtg
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To: BiggieLittle
TRUE ones would not sue a doctor or hospital for trying as best they could to help someone. Where was any harm done. The man did better than expected and someone wants to sue. WHAT???
26 posted on 12/04/2010 5:04:11 AM PST by John D
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To: bd476
Praising God with you, Bd476! Our Lord is Awesome! Thank you for the Ping.
27 posted on 12/04/2010 6:00:57 PM PST by Kitty Mittens (To God Be All Excellent Praise!)
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