Ben Russell, NBC 5 News
Blake Hyland, 14, of McGregor, was nearly killed in a gymnastics accident on Feb.18. He was attempting a new trick which involved jumping off of a vault, flipping and twisting in the air and landing on his feet in a foam pit.
The parents of a Texas teen clinging to life in a Fort Worth hospital credit complete strangers and the power of prayer for helping their son's recovery.
Blake Hyland, 14, of McGregor, was nearly killed in a gymnastics accident on Feb. 18.
The teen was attempting a new trick which involved jumping off a vault, flipping and twisting in the air and landing on his feet in a foam pit.
"There was a pad on the side, but his side hit it," Pat Hyland, the teen's father said about the accident. "Then his head came down and there was no pad on the concrete and his head hit concrete right next to [the foam pit]."
Paramedics rushed Blake Hyland to Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center in Waco where doctors, who informed the teen's parents there was bleeding on his brain, immediately performed emergency surgery. The surgery included removing a portion of the teen's skull to reduce swelling.
"The doctors there went above and beyond. And if they did not do that the doctors here at Cook Children's said that Blake would not have survived," Pat Hyland said.
Blake Hyland was then transferred to Cook Children's where he has been kept sedated in a medically induced coma and on a ventilator while he recovers.
The teen's cousin has since established the "Prayers for Blake Hyland" Facebook page to update friends and family on his condition. And the page has now gained attention from far and wide.
"My niece texted me this morning and said there's over 7,000 likes on that [Facebook page.] Never would have imagined," said Cindy Hyland, the teen's mother. "It's overwhelming."
The Facebook page features pictures of temporary tattoos friends and classmates have designed, a photograph from a University of Kentucky tumbling team holding signs reading "Pray for Blake," a video message from a Waco pastor, and hundreds of comments from people offering encouraging words and prayers.
Blake Hyland's father credits the prayers and the emotional support with his son's recovery to this point. Hyland is already moving his left arm and leg and squeezing his doctor's finger upon request. His movement comes just days after doctors initially gave him 50/50 odds of survival.
"[The doctors] can't explain that. We can. We know why that is. Because of all the prayers that people have been lifting up for him," Pat Hyland said.