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Family was planning a funeral for man taken off life support. Then he cracked a smile

Scott Marr, who used to do play calls for Creighton University’s basketball team, was taken off life support after suffering a suspected stroke — but then woke up. That earned him the nickname “Miracle Man.”
Scott Marr, who used to do play calls for Creighton University’s basketball team, was taken off life support after suffering a suspected stroke — but then woke up. That earned him the nickname “Miracle Man.” Screengrab from KMTV

Scott Marr’s family thought they were saying their final goodbyes as the 61-year-old man from Nebraska lay motionless in a hospital bed.

Doctors believed that Marr, who called games for Creighton University’s basketball team for 16 years, suffered a stroke after his “son found him lying in bed, unresponsive but breathing” on Dec. 12, according to the World-Herald. The day before was his 61st birthday.

The following day, Marr’s family received some dreaded news from staff at the Methodist Hospital in Omaha, KETV7 reported.

“The neurosurgeon said if there was anything he could do, he would do it, but that we needed to prepare ourselves for the reality of the situation,” Preston Marr, his daughter, told KETV7. “They told us he was on his way to brain death, so we said our goodbyes before extubating him. All the monitors were shut off and we waited by his side.”

Dr. Rebecca Runge, who works at the hospital, told KMTV that “we thought that this wasn’t a recoverable process.”

Then, Scott Marr’s relatives said, the beloved family member earned his new “Miracle Man” nickname.

After leaving the hospital on Dec. 13, Scott Marr’s “family made appointments for cremation and funeral services,” according to KETV7.

But on Dec. 14, staff at the hospital called Preston Marr, KMTV reported. They had a question: Could she make it to the hospital to see her dad?

As it turned out, Scott Marr wasn’t quite ready to let go of life.

“When we got up there, I went in just to talk to him, like I have been this whole time, and said, ‘Hi Dad,’” Preston Marr recalled to KETV7. “He smiled at me, and I literally thought I was dreaming. It was the craziest moment ever.

“I asked him to move his thumbs, and he slowly moved his thumbs, and I asked him to wiggle his toes, and he wiggled all his toes really slightly,” she continued, according to KETV7. “I literally had to rub my eyes to make sure it was actually happening.”

Doctors say they diagnosed Scott Marr with posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome, and not a stroke, after giving him medical tests, according to KMTV. The condition usually causes “headaches, seizures, altered consciousness, and visual disturbance,” according to a study in the National Center for Biotechnology Information.

Runge told the World-Herald that doctors initially thought it was a stroke because “the severe swelling (Scott) Marr experienced is not typically a symptom of the syndrome.” He has since been released from the hospital and is recovering with the aid of physical therapy.

As Scott Marr tries to “savor every moment,” he gave credit to God for giving him a second chance at life, the World-Herald reported.

“I’m not an extremely religious person. I don’t go to church every Sunday,” Marr told the newspaper. “But I do believe in God. I believe with all my heart. And now this is just proof for me that everything I’ve ever heard is true.

“That he loves me. That he’s right there for me,” he continued. “It was pretty much a miracle.”

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