“Largest Burn Survivor in the US given a 1% chance of survival goes on to play Divison 1 Lacrosse”
December 21, 2008
13 year old Connor McKemey was involved in a backyard accident that left him with burns over almost 90% of his body, mostly 3rd degree and higher. He was flown to the JMS Burn Center in Augusta, Georgia and was given a less than a 1% chance of survival. His father was deployed in Iraq and rushed home - the goal of the doctors was just to keep Connor alive long enough for his father to say goodbye. Upon arrival at the hospital, Connor's parents were told if he did survive, to expect at least a year in the hospital and the 3 sport athlete would more than likely never walk again.
After almost 4 months in a coma and over 100 surgeries, Connor took his first tentative steps in the hospital and went into the record books as one of the largest burn survivors in the United States. After only five months, Connor was released from the burn center and sent to Levine's Children's Hospital for inpatient rehab where he had to relearn everything from how to adapt his new hands which were missing several fingers, to tie his shoes & dress himself- to standing and balancing to better walk on his own.
After 6 months in a hospital setting, Connor was ready to go home. His initial goal was to make it to his 8th grade graduation. He not only made it back to school, but was able to walk across the stage and accept his diploma with his classmates.
11 months after the accident, Connor defied all of the doctors predictions as well as any records of prior burn patients, and stepped out onto the Lacrosse field to play in his first High School game.
Connor has gone on to play varsity lacrosse, winning a state championship in 2011; was class president, captain of his schools spirit squad was named one of the "Top 12 Teens of 2012" by Charlotte Parent Magazine and featured on the cover of US Lacrosse Magazine. Now 20 years old and in his Junior year at High Point University, Connor has achieved his life-long goal of playing D1 Lacrosse.
Though his physical appearance has been altered, his inner beauty shines through and he is an inspiring light to all that come in contact with him. Connor has shared his story of hope and inspiration as a featured speaker for the Cam Newton Foundation, the
Children's Miracle Network, Carolinas Medical Center, Doctors Hospital, Augusta, and The Southeastern Firefighters Burn Foundation as well as for a variety of sports teams and student organizations. His message is that we all have some sort of scars… his happen to be on the outside, though many of us carry scars on the inside. Regardless of what bad things happen to you, you can rise above it and take the "impossible" and turn it into "I'M Possible".
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