It’s the hardest decision anyone has to make: whether to take a loved one off life support or try to keep them alive, even when they seem long gone.
But it’s even more difficult when it’s a parent deciding the fate of their child.
That’s the nightmare scenario one mother found herself in—only to discover a stunning twist.
Two months ago, Trenton McKinley, a 13-year-old boy from Mobile, Alabama, was having the kind of reckless adventure kids his age might have. His friend was driving a dune buggy and Trenton hitched a ride via a wagon attached to the back.
But tragedy struck when Trenton’s friend suddenly braked and the trailer flipped over. Trenton managed to get his friend’s 4-year-old niece out in time, but in doing so got caught in the trailer as it flipped.
Trenton landed on the concrete, and the trailer crashed down on his head. He was immediately knocked unconscious and rushed to the emergency room.
(Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Trenton suffered seven skull fractures—and things were looking grim.
Trenton’s mother, Jennifer Reindl, recalled the horrific sight.
“All I saw was a stretcher with his feet hanging out. He was dead a total of 15 minutes,” Reindl told WALA.
As her son underwent surgery, doctors told her to prepare for the worst.
“They said he would never be normal again,” she said. “They told me the oxidation [oxygen depravation] [sic] problems would be so bad to his brain, that he would be a vegetable if he even made it.”
Trenton continued for days on life support. He showed no signs of improving.
With all hope seemingly lost, Trenton’s parents were given a difficult choice—one that would force them to say goodbye to their son, but offer hope to other children.
“Five kids needed organs that matched him,” Reindl said. “It was unfair to keep bringing him back because it was just damaging his organs even more.”
The parents signed the papers to donate Trenton’s organs.
But then, the day before the doctors were set to pull the plug, a miracle happened:
Trenton started showing signs of life.
Against all odds, Trenton slowly regained consciousness. Everyone was stunned—including Trenton, who considered his recovery a divine miracle.
“There’s no other explanation but God,” Trenton said. “There’s no other way. Even doctors said it.”
It was an unbelievable sight: not long after everyone assumed he was long gone, Trenton was up and learning to walk again.
Trenton is walking…praise the lord….i tell you god is good…😍😍😍😍
Posted by Jennifer Nicole Reindl on Tuesday, April 3, 2018
According to WALA, Trenton isn’t out of the woods yet: he still suffers from nerve damage and seizures and has lost 50 pounds.
He also has a dent on the side of his head—but amazingly he’s having a great sense of humor about it.
“I said I could turn sideways and put salsa in there and eat chips and dip out of my head. No more washing dishes for me!” Trenton joked.