Skip to main content

The Unfolding of a Miracle Brings Mom Home

Share This article

The emergency C-section had gone well for Zach Carver’s third child, who was now resting in the neonatal intensive care unit. Zach says, “They walked in and said, 'It’s a boy, and he is doing fine.'” His wife, Autumn, however, was in ICU, fighting for her life. 

Zach remembers the chilling words about Autumn’s condition, "I was told that she had zero percent chance of survival. I mean, it was the worst day of my life.”

Autumn was 8 months pregnant when she and Zach contracted Covid-19 in mid-August, 2021. Zach recovered quickly. Autumn did not. By late August she was in ICU on a ventilator with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome and having an emergency C-section to save the life of the baby. Then, she was put on advanced life support called ECMO.

“I’ve been with Autumn since I was 14 years old. I don’t know life without her, and so they are telling me she is not going to survive. It was terrible,” said Zach.

In the coming weeks, Autumn remained in critical condition. All Zach could do was pray and ask God for a miracle. “I would sit with her and pray, and pray over her. It was just overwhelming, and so I would go walk the halls, or sit in the waiting room. I was begging Him to keep her alive, to let her beat the odds, I need her, the kids need her." By this time, Zach had posted a prayer request on Facebook that ignited a wildfire on social media. “Literally all over the world just millions of people all over the world were just praying for us.”

Despite the dire prognosis, Zach took a firm stand in faith for his wife. “I told them I am not leaving here without Autumn. I prayed all the time. Every second. I can’t explain it, I just knew she was going to survive.”

During the day, Zach maintained a vigil at Autumn’s side.  At night, he visited his two daughters and baby son Huxley, who were staying with their grandparents. Then, he returned to an empty dark house. “It was super sad. I would come in, get some food, and go right to bed. I hated being there.”

With the arrival of fall, came more complications for the young mother and wife: multiple infections, anemia, and she even went into cardiac arrest and had to be revived. Doctors had few answers and considered a double lung transplant but dismissed the idea. Instead, they suggested that Autumn be taken off life support and allowed to die peacefully with a “Do Not Resuscitate” order in place. Zach declined, refusing to give up.

“The main doctor said there was a zero per cent chance that she would survive. I remember going off on my own that afternoon somewhere in the hospital. I had been praying. I just knew that she wasn’t going to die.”  

Zach and millions on Facebook continued to pray as Zach began searching for a second opinion. In early October there was one hopeful moment. Autumn’s vital signs improved slightly, and doctors agreed to Zach’s request that she be taken out of sedation and off of the ECMO machine long enough for her to see and hold Huxley for the first, and perhaps, the last time.

Autumn cries when she remembers that happy day, “I obviously had very little strength to hold myself up, so they got me all propped up with lots of pillows. They brought him in and put him in my arms. Zach was helping me, and we got to feed him a bottle. Then, they took him and laid him to my side, and he just curled up and went to sleep.”

The reunion was short lived as Autumn was put back on ECMO. Then, another answer to prayer. Renowned thoracic surgeon, Dr. Ankit Bharat at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago agreed to evaluate Autumn for a double lung transplant. “We got transferred up to Chicago," Zach says, "and that doctor, day two, said, 'Whether you need a lung transplant or not, you are going to be fine.'”

Although still on life support, Autumn was only lightly sedated. Now she and Zach could pray together as they waited for Dr. Bharat’s decision. Before long, he gave them the best news they could have hoped for. 

Zach smiles broadly as he says, “He came in and said, 'You don’t need a lung transplant, you are going to be fine.' It was super good news, super, super good news, we embraced in a hug and thanked God and the doctor.”

Autumn was weaned slowly from the ECMO machine and continued to improve. On November 11, three months after being given no hope of survival, Autumn was discharged from Northwestern Memorial Hospital to begin three weeks of rehabilitation. On Dec 1, 2021, Autumn walked out of the hospital, smiling and unassisted.

“We pulled into the driveway, our neighbors were in our yard yelling and screaming. I am trying not to cry," Zach says, wiping away tears. “It was just emotional.”

Autumn tries to describe her homecoming, “It was a whole host of emotions, it was happy, just the opportunity to see my kids grow, to spend time with my husband. Every day is a gift.” Autumn says she will never forget what her daughter said that day, “I believe in miracles, mommy."

The neighborhood is quiet today, Autumn is busy providing her family with all the TLC they missed and more. But life in the Carver family will never be the same.

Autumn wants to encourage others when she says, “Tell people you love them, give lots of hugs. It can just all change so quickly. You don’t want to leave anything left unsaid."

Zach reflects, “I’m closer with my family. I say prayers with my kids every night, I didn’t do that before. I am super grateful and I don’t go throughout the day without saying multiple prayers. Prayer saved my wife, and not only did it save her life, it changed my life.”

Autumn adds, “Prayer is so important. It’s everything. It saved my life. When people are flooding the gates of heaven, there is no way it will be ignored.”


Share This article

About The Author

Debbie White

Debbie is proud to be a “home grown” 700 Club producer. She gives all the credit for her skills to mentors who are the “best in the biz”, and a company like CBN that invested in developing her talent. Joining CBN as a freshly minted college graduate with a BS in Psychology and the zest of a new Christian, she was eager to learn television. Over the next 20 years, she held many challenging roles, but found her “home” producing testimonies for The 700 Club. Like Eric Liddell as he ran in “Chariots of Fire,” she feels “His pleasure” when she produces one of God’s life-changing stories.