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Trauma survivors, doctors gather to celebrate life

Posted at 6:27 PM, May 15, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-16 09:06:57-04

Celebrating a second chance at life.

Dozens of trauma survivors got to spend time with doctors who helped save their lives!

Jena Antonchuk's then 11-year-old son, Alex Wigg, was  hit by a car while as he was riding his bike on his way to school.

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"It was the scariest time of my life... He had a spike in temperature, he had spikes in blood pressure."

Alex had a severe brain injury and was in critical condition for three days.

One year later, Alex is doing well. On Tuesday, he was sitting beside his mom together with dozens of other UMC Trauma survivors and doctors to celebrate life.

One of the physicians who treated Alex was there too.

Dr. Mark Dugan is a pediatric ICU physician, "We don't often get to see this side of things where people come back and they're healthy and certainly not in the same state that I met them."

It's hard to imagine, at one point Alex was in such terrible shape, he couldn't even recognize his family. 

Fighting back tears, Jena says, "You don't know if you're going to get the same child back again." She leans in to kiss Alex on the forehead, "But we got you back."

They're grateful to the everyday heroes who help save lives.

Alex Wigg says they have inspired him to become a surgeon.

"I want to save a person and maybe even see them like some doctors here today. And say that, I got to save a person and look where they are now."

Victims of the 1 October shooting were also part of the group who attended the special event.