COVID survivor has emotional reunion with Beaumont Royal Oak ICU nurse

‘I just can’t say thank you enough,’

ROYAL OAK, Mich. – There’s no doubt that the COVID pandemic has been an emotional time for so many people.

There’s been too much heartbreak, but there’s also been moment that can make your heart burst with happiness and gratitude.



Coronavirus survivor Heather Elizabeth-Brown spent 120 days in the hospital with 31 of those days on a ventilator in a medically induced coma at Beaumont Royal Oak.

“Zac came in at night and I always remembered him because he had a ponytail that stuck up over his PPE equipment,” Brown said. “He took care of me while I was in the coma and also when I came out.”

A year later, the 35-year-old doesn’t remember much, but she does remember coming out of the coma, learning her heart had stopped before she was brought back. In her COVID-19 fog, she panicked, but she remembers a neurotrauma ICU named Zac Mudge.

During a Zoom call, she was reunited with Mudge. It was the first time she saw his whole face. She knew she had to thank him.

“Just that moment you talked to me meant so much. I told my mother and my friends about you,” Brown told him. “It showed not just who you are as a professional but who you are as a person and I don’t have enough words to tell you how much that meant. Thank you. I appreciate it.”

“I tried to be as compassionate and attentive to all my patients and let them know their situation and how we’ll get through it together,” Mudge said.

Brown said she never had the chance to properly thank him before the Zoom call.

You can watch Paula Tutman’s full story in the video above.


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