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Fourth of July Tragedy Ends in a Miracle

Paul and his family were celebrating Independence Day, but the party turned into a nightmare when a snake bite sent Paul into a 22 day coma. Read Transcript


NARRATOR: In 2016, Paul Drain and his family

were celebrating the 4th of July with fireworks at his mother

Rita's home in Kerens, Texas.

Before they finished, Paul went to his truck

to grab a flashlight.

He couldn't see where he was stepping.

RITA: When he came back, he said, Mom, a big snake bit me.

And of course, I went into panic mode.

We all did.

We sat him down in a chair and I said, where does it hurt?

And he said, everywhere, Mom.

NARRATOR: A rattlesnake had bitten Paul on his left ankle.

GINGER: He started shaking.

He started making sounds like he was going to vomit.

He couldn't get up out of the chair.

RITA: He just slumped over, and with that, he was gone.

NARRATOR: With the property so far out in the country,

they drove to the nearest highway to meet the ambulance.

By then, Paul had gone into cardiac arrest.

I was praying.

I was begging.

I mean, I just was saying, please,

God, please, God, please, God.

I've never begged so hard.

NARRATOR: Paul was taken to Navarro Regional Hospital

in Corsicana, Texas, where Dr. Gregory Meador and his team

were waiting.

When he hit the door, they were doing CPR on him.

We put him back into the trauma room.

Had to put a breathing tube into him.

We had to continue CPR.

And when I looked at him, his skin

was very what we call "mottled."

It was all different colors, which

told me that he was having no perfusion,

because his heart wasn't beating properly.

NARRATOR: After being treated with a vial of anti-venom,

he was still in critical condition and needed to be

transported to Parkland Hospital in Dallas--

an hour away.

DOCTOR: The likelihood of him surviving

is very small, because most of these patients

die in the field.

They never make it to medical care,

because it's such a rapid onset of anaphylactic shock,

and they die.

I called on God because I know nothing is impossible for him.

I don't know how to explain the peace that

surpasses understanding.

When I should have been at the direst feelings inside,

I still had hope that he would make it through.

NARRATOR: When Paul arrived, doctors

discovered he had liver damage.

His kidneys stopped working, his colon shut down,

and part of his small intestine needed to be removed.

They told the family not to expect him to live much longer.

My whole life stopped, because you don't

live longer than your child.

As a wife, losing my husband of 22 years, whom

I love with all my heart, and as a mother--

he's very active in our daughters' lives.

They love him.

Telling them that he's not going to be around anymore

was a big fear.

NARRATOR: Paul was put into a medically induced coma, still

in critical condition.

By now, a prayer chain had been started that spread

through their friends, church members, and across the country

through social media.

GINGER: I feel like I've turned to God at this point

because in everything I've turned to God in prayer.

In the Bible, it says, "pray without ceasing"--

in good times and in bad.

NARRATOR: The prayer vigil continued as the family watched

for any sign of progress.

Then, after 22 days, Paul opened his eyes.

RITA: And I realized he saw me, and he asked me, what happened?

I said, do you really want to know, Paul?

I knew that he knew me, And I knew he was awake.

Thank God-- that's how I felt. Thank God.

Thank God.

I had that big ugly smile that you

smile so big you look goofy.

So for a while, a smile was on my face.

I was just relieved to--

I was very, very happy.

NARRATOR: After three months of rehab, Paul went home.

DOCTOR: I think Paul's survival's a miracle.

I mean, my understanding from some of my colleagues

is that there's only been less than 50 documented

cases of people surviving a snake bite directly

into a vein.

So I would say that's definitely a miracle from God.

I wouldn't be here if it wasn't.

There were people, basically from around the world,

on prayer chains, and I can honestly

say I would not be here if prayer didn't work.

It works.

NARRATOR: Eventually, Paul's kidneys healed,

and he underwent a number of surgeries

to repair nerve damage caused by the venom.

In less than a year, he was back at work

as a manager for the US Postal Service.

Now, when Paul and his family gather for 4th of July,

they have extra cause for celebration.

RITA: Now look at him.

Yeah-- don't you think that's a miracle?

I do.

Yes.

I'm very thankful.

In my heart, I know the only reason Paul is here

today is because of prayer.

God gave me the strength to live and to make it through.

I know prayer works.

I don't believe-- I know.

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