Matthew's Miracle: A WAFF 48 News Special Report

By Mark Thornhill - bio | email

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - In September of 2007 WAFF 48 News anchor Mark Thornhill had to carry his oldest son Wes to the pediatric ICU at Huntsville Hospital for Women and Children.

There were about 20 people gathered inside and around a young boy's room. They were crying. Since then, WAFF 48 has told you several stories about the boy, the horrific accident, and the miracles that have followed.

Two years later, this amazing story of "Matthew's Miracle" is still being written.

It wasn't supposed to happen. After all, Matthew Wiese was only 10 years old. He was athletic, energetic, and full of life. In an instant, in a field behind his home in Toney, Matthew's go-kart and his young life were both turned upside down.

The head injury was almost beyond comprehension. His skull was like the shell of a hard-boiled egg. It cracked into 40 pieces. The main artery to his brain was severed. And when his brain started swelling, the doctors said he wasn't going to live.

They told his family to say goodbye. That's the gathering Mark saw that day. His mom, Tina, recalls hugging and kissing him for what she wished would be an eternity, but then letting him go into eternity.

"I said to myself, 'Matthew you're hurt so bad; it's time for you to go,' because I didn't want him to be in a lot of pain," said Tina.

His family, which is so filled with faith, even dressed him in nice clothes, put a ball under his arm and set him on top of the bed sheets. He was ready for his trip to Heaven.

But then the inevitable turned into the inexplicable. Matthew started breathing on his own. Doctors were baffled.

After months of rehabilitation, he was able to return home. Matthew was still in a coma, but still very much alive. Doctors still believed he would develop complications, like pneumonia, and would probably die at home.

But it obviously wasn't supposed to happen. Matthew will turn 13 next month. He, his mom, his dad Jim and older brother Andrew have spent the last two years as a family. Sharing birthdays, holidays, vacations. Different? Sure, but still together.

"He just doesn't respond sometimes. But he's there. We all know he's there spiritually," said Andrew.

Matthew has taught many of us about miracles. They're not always like a booming, blinding bolt of lightning across the sky. Sometimes, they're soft, silent, subtle. Like the moving of fingers. The stretching of a body. A facial expression.

In fact, some doctors have told the Wieses Matthew will never wake up. One even suggested the family stop feeding him and giving him medication and let him die.

The Wieses knew that wasn't supposed to happen. Through it all, this family has felt a sense of peace and strength that transcends any obstacles. Jim calls the messages of hope "God Whispers."

"We've had so many amazing events that I used to think were coincidences. And I don't even believe in coincidences anymore," said Jim.

It's fascinating that a young boy whose eyes are still closed, has opened the eyes of so many. That a young boy who can't speak continues to tell a story that touches the heart. That a young boy who can't walk has caused so many to walk more closely with their maker.

"I think the most amazing thing to me is how humbling it is to hear from people all over the country about how they pray for him each day," said Jim.

Jim's employer, ADTRAN, paid for expensive medical equipment for Matthew. A family who saw one of our stories gave the Wiese's a handicapped-accessible van. On Matthew's website at , the Wiese's have received thousands of well wishes from people around the valley, around the country, around the world.

Will he ever wake up? Will he walk? Will he talk? The Wiese family honestly doesn't know. They say they take one day at a time watching and waiting. They realize that every second they have with Matthew is a gift.

Though they respect "earthly" doctors, they ultimately rely on "the great physician."

"We know that there's a purpose behind this, that God's still got a plan," said Jim.

Moments after we left, this sleeping angel began to smile, like the sun breaking through the clouds.

None of this was supposed to happen. Then again, maybe it was. Matthew's dad, Jim, said Matthew opened his left eye pretty wide a couple of days ago. Another step in the right direction.

When Matthew wakes up, we're not only going to do a story on it, we're going to have the biggest celebration you've ever seen.

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