The Church is the one to say there was a miracle, he says, but it seems prayers saved his life. Thousands of people were praying for him and he began asking for the intercession of Blessed Bartolo Longo, who dedicated his life to the rosary.
The medical staff brought him a pad to write on but in his sickness he could not spell rosary, he said. His sister from Albuquerque had arrived and figured out what he wanted and went to the gift shop and brought back a hand-made orange and green plastic rosary.
“The minute they put it in my hand I felt calm … I had felt like I was adrift in the ocean of suffering and this rosary was my lifeline and as long as I held on to it I was safe,” he said.
By 7 p.m. he was intubated and hooked up to a ventilator, he said. The following day all the tubes were removed and he was breathing on his own.
“That never happens … when they put someone on life support and they remove it 24 hours later … that just doesn’t happen,” Fr. McKee said. “The doctor is very puzzled and he’s not happy because he cannot understand what is going on. He wants to understand why I got so sick so quickly – I had acute respiratory failure – and how I got well.”