By Snejana Farberov for dailymail.com
When Taylor Hale was declared brain dead in September 2011 after a terrible accident, the 14-year-old girl’s parents could hardly imagine she would ever wake up, let alone walk in her graduation ceremony.
But come Monday, the 17-year-old Waukee High School senior will don her cap and gown and ascend the stage at Knapp Center in De Moines, Iowa, as part of the graduating class of 2015 to accept her hard-fought diploma.
Hale and her family are painfully aware how close she came to missing that special moment, along with the rest of her life. All it took was a medical miracle – and a helping hand from a devout chiropractor.
On the night of September 11, 2011, Taylor was hanging out with friends after a football game when one of them said he had to go.
Hale, then 14 years old, and another girl playfully hopped on the hood of his car to stop him from leaving.
When the boy unwittingly put the vehicle in reverse, Hale and her friend were thrown to the ground. While the other girl escaped unharmed, Taylor banged her head against the pavement and lost conciseness, reported Des Moines Register.
The girl was rushed to a hospital where doctors told her parents, Stacey Hennigsen and Chuck Hale, that their daughter has a traumatic brain injury.
Hale spent the next seven days in a medically induced coma to help her brain heal, but her prospects were bleak.
Then on September 17, the comatose teen suffered a brain hemorrhage that resulted in her brain partially sliding into her spinal canal – a medical ‘point of no return’ that is considered irreversible and almost always fatal.
Taylor’s doctors informed her devastated parents that their child, who only a week ago was a lively, sociable high school freshman, was now brain dead and it was time for them to start thinking about donating her organs and making preparations for her funeral
But a visit from a family friend seemingly changed everything.
Jeff Stickel, a chiropractor and a devout Christian, came by the hospital that afternoon telling them he felt God was calling him to help heal Taylor.
Taylor’s parents told Stickel their daughter was unconscious and there was nothing he could do for her.
Stickel asked if he could pray with the family for Taylor, and they agreed. He then placed his hand on the comatose girl’s neck and asked God to spare the 14-year-old’s life.
Later that day, after Stickel had departed, Hale’s doctors took her off life support, but instead of flatlining the girl struggled to draw a breath on her own.
For the next several hours, Taylor, now back on life support, started showing visible signs of improvement: her brain activity picked up, her eyelids were aflutter, and for the first time in a week she was trying to talk.
Eventually, against overwhelming odds, Taylor Hale awoke from her coma.
‘It was the hand of God at work,’ Chuck Hale told the paper. ‘That’s the only thing that can explain it.’ Slowly but surely, Taylor was on the road to recovery.
She would spend the next several months re-learning how to do everything, from eating on her own to walking and talking. ‘It was just like a painful stressful recovery. But I pushed through it because you just got to do what you got to do,’ Taylor told the station KCCI.
The arduous process was not without its low points and setbacks, as Taylor struggled to regain her cognitive ability and grew frustrated because her long-term memory was gone.
She eventually returned to school, where Taylor now had to work harder than anyone else to pass tests and make her grades.
She said it was especially difficult because most of the friends she had before the accident have inexplicably turned their backs on her.
But her progress, given the severity of her injury, has been tremendous: Taylor has learned to drive a car, started dating and, as of late, her childhood memories have been coming back to her in bits and pieces.
Looking back on the dramatic events of the fall of 2011, Taylor and her family are convinced that the girl cheated death because of divine intervention.
‘I’m always thankful to all the doctors and nurses and therapists who helped me get better, but God did most of the saving,’ she told the paper.
Taylor Hale plans to enroll in a community college next year and study event planning.
First reported at dailymail.com
Miraculous recovery from Brain Dead To Graduating High School