Miracle Child Rises From Tragedy

By: Dana Arquilla
By: Dana Arquilla

Baby Jordan wasn't quite five months old when his short life came to an end, but on the other side of the country, Jordan's heart lives on.

Larry and Jane York routinely babysat for their two grandchildren. On February 13 Jane went to check on Jordan during an afternoon nap. Things were anything but routine.

Jane says, "What he did was, when I laid a pillow on each side so that in case he rolled, he pulled one of my pillows from the back and pulled it literally over top himself and he smothered himself."

The grandparents immediately dialed 9-1-1. The Panama City Police Department arrived within minutes. Paramedics took Jordan to Bay Medical Center, then airlifted to him to Sacred Heart in Pensacola. Doctors there pronounced Jordan brain dead.

The family had to make the decision whether to donate Jordan's organs.

Larry York, Jordan's grandfather, says, "I took my finger and put it on his hand and I asked my little buddy if he could just let me know that it was ok. I felt him squeeze my finger, and it was like he said, ‘papaw, I'm ok.’"

At the same time, on the other side of the country, a Phoenix couple was hoping for a miracle. Their twin infants were suffering from cardiovascular disease.

The twins needed new hearts. It took almost 48 hours for doctors to match Jordan with one of the twins, baby Nick.

UCLA doctors rushed to transplant Jordan's heart into Nick. The transplant was successful.

Nicole Draper, Nick's mom, says, “One thing that we want everyone to know is how grateful we are. Obviously our situation is difficult, but we certainly would not want to be on the other end either and what a different situation for their family and how grateful we are for making that life saving donation."

Larry adds, "You come to this earth to get a body, which he did, and if part of him can continue to beat and help another little child to live, then my grandson is not completely dead."

The York family is holding a benefit for baby Jordan at J. Krash's Sports Bar on March 4 at 3:30 p.m. The money raised at the benefit will go toward raising money for child size defibrillators.


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