Coronavirus Aurora: Youth Pastor survives COVID-19 after being put on ventilator

AURORA, Ill. (WLS) -- An Aurora youth pastor has recovered from a serious bout of COVID-19, so sick at one point he was put on a ventilator.

"There was a lot of loneliness, fear like I've never experienced, pain like I've never experienced," Andrew Coffield said.

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By all accounts, Coffield is a living miracle.

"From nearly dying on a Friday, to being off a ventilator on a Monday, to being at home on a Thursday, it was just a dramatic turnaround," he said.

Coffield is the youth pastor of First Apostolic Church in Aurora. He battled for his life for more than two weeks after contracting COVID-19.

The 29-year-old said he caught the virus after he, his wife Chelsea and their 2-year-old son Carson traveled to his hometown of Grand Blanc, Michigan, to be closer to family after hearing about the Illinois shelter-in-place order. Coffield started feeling sick on March 22 after playing basketball with one of his nephews.

"Fast forward 24 hours and I'm running a temperature of 104 degrees, the highest I've ever had in my life," he said.

He quarantined himself at his family's home for the next week, but just wasn't getting any better. When they called the local hospital, doctors there told them strict protocols mean they couldn't test him for coronavirus, so they should stay home.

"They told us to wait until Monday," Coffield said. "Had I waited until Monday, there would be a good chance I wouldn't be talking to you right now."

Coffield's mother, who is a nurse, and his wife rushed him to the hospital anyway. After his condition began to deteriorate, he was put on a ventilator.

After seven days, Coffield said he was taken off and doesn't remember much of what happened during that time except waking up feeling confused. So he followed his faith and sang church hymns as loud as he could.

"I couldn't move my body, I couldn't move my legs, I couldn't move my arms, but I could lift my voice, and I lifted my voice as loud as I could," he said.

Coffield credits his recovery to the power of prayer. He was met by loving family and friends when he was released from the hospital on April 9.

"If a miracle can happen for me, it can happen for someone else," he said.
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