Father defends his "brain-dead" son with a gun
If someone we love were in mortal danger, how far would we be willing to go? Whatever you make of this father's act of desperation, ultimately none of us can say what we would have done in his situation.
In January of 2015, George Pickering III was lying in a coma at the Tomball Regional Medical Center in Houston following a huge stroke. The 27-year-old Texan had already had a number of strokes before. Now the doctors declared him brain-dead.
The diagnosis hit the family hard, especially his father, George Pickering II. He was so beside himself that hospital personnel were worried about his mental state and transferred the power of decision-making about George Jr. to his mother.
At last the doctors asked for permission to take the young man off of life support so that his organs could be donated to other sick patients. After struggling with it a great deal, she finally agreed and they initiated the procedure.
But George's father couldn't accept that the end had really arrived for his son. He felt deep inside that it couldn't be over yet. When he heard about his ex-wife's decision, he pulled out a firearm and threatened hospital personnel. It was his last hope to stop the doctors from making what he felt was a terrible mistake. His other son took the gun out of his hands. But the raging father pulled a second pistol, refusing to leave the patient's room. For three hours he waited at his son's bedside as the police tried to negotiate with him.
During that time he held George Jr.'s hand tightly in his own. He begged his motionless child to give him a sign of life so that the doctors would finally believe him, that something could still be done to help the young man. Then something unbelievable happened: with everyone watching, the allegedly brain-dead young man weakly but very visibly pressed his father's hand three times. The doctors could hardly believe their eyes but when they examined him again, they confirmed that he showed reactions a brain-dead patient couldn't have. Deeply relieved and grateful, his father turned himself in to the police.
George Jr. subsequently woke up from his coma and is now fully recovered. His father served eleven months in prison for attempted assault with a deadly weapon. There probably isn't anyone who would willingly take that route but that was how he saved his son's life. George Jr. was moved and infinitely grateful when he heard how far his father went to protect him.
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Luckily George Sr.'s desperate act didn't harm anyone. His son was able to communicate to him and everyone else that there was still some life left in him. What could have been a tragedy for all led instead, miraculously, to a good outcome.