Lamesa is home to the Medical Arts Hospital. It's already a huge facility. Now, they're excited about adding a wing that will provide a dialysis center as well. But modern medicine aside, this story is about one woman in Lamesa who fell victim to a rare virus and credits her recovery in large part to the power of prayer.
"What I went through was something no one wants to go through," Judy Meyers says.
It was a normal August day last summer for Judy, at home with her husband, Kenneth, when she developed what she thought was a terrible migraine. By the next day, there was a fever. Then came the ambulance.
"I was in the CICU for about 4 or 5 days. At that point, I didn't know anything. The doctors told my family that I might not make it," she says.
The reason? A mosquito that was infected with West Nile virus.
Last year in Texas, there were about 1,800 cases of West Nile, which can lead to paralysis, even death. But here in Lamesa, the family credits a certain man for a power stronger than anything a mosquito can carry: Reverend Clifton Igo has been in the pulpit for 62 years. He was in that hospital room when Judy needed her dad.
The reverend explains it like this: "I was standing at the foot of the bed. All the family was in there. The only thing I could do was pray. I felt so helpless. So, I prayed as serious as I knew how. God, please open the eyes of my daughter and please heal her." after 5 days of delirium, that's when Judy opened her eyes.
The reverend says "She looked up and she said, 'daddy, I love you.' we just almost shouted. And I just prayed for her. God does the work. I just do the words."
Judy didn't learn until after returning home how lucky she was. When a call came from the state health department in Austin, a woman explained: "Your case was the second highest in the state of Texas without paralysis. I just can't believe you were so high with your blood count."
Judy says she still doesn't understand how it happened. She just knows that it was a miracle that she lived survived the neuro-invasive kind of West Nile and was not paralyzed.
One thing she is certain about now, she hates mosquitos and keeps a big can of bug spray by every door to cover her before going outside.
Ironically, her husband, Kenneth, learned something about himself while Judy was at death's door.
He says, "They tested me for West Nile and said 'yeah, you've had this before. So, I'm one of the 80% who have the virus and never know it."
Sadly, two days before this story aired, Reverend Clifton Igo died at his home in Lamesa. His family says this final story about his faith was a credit to his life-long service to family, community and god. As our community coverage ended, brother Igo was buried at First Baptist church in Lamesa.
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