MURFREESBORO, Tenn. — Wednesday afternoon, the Timbs family got together in Murfreesboro for something special.
They reunited with Charlie "Skipper" Timbs after nine long months. The 68-year-old spent the last 287 days in the hospital battling COVID-19.
"So many times you take it for granted that you could've picked up the phone and called him and I didn't," said Mike Timbs, Skipper's brother. "Then you can't do it, it makes you think.
Skipper Timbs was admitted into the hospital on July 9 with COVID-19. He was on a ventilator from July 14 to the last day of January.
During his fight, doctors were forced to insert a feeding tube. He suffered a stroke, hearing loss and went into kidney failure.
"I'm a respiratory therapist so I deal with COVID every day. Nut when it's your own family and can't see them it's completely different," Skipper's sister Wanda Barrett said.
Skipper has been transported from Nashville to Lebanon, Tennessee and all the way to Louisville, Kentucky.
"At one point the doctor said it would be best to put him in a hospice because he would never be the same again," Timbs niece, Melanie Killian, said. "He would never walk again."
Defying all odds, on April 21, Skipper got to take his first steps outside of the hospital, surrounded by family.
To make the trip home extra special, Skipper was also escorted by the local fire department's chief.
This story was originally published by Seena Sleem on Scripps station WTVF in Nashville.