SCOTTSDALE, AZ - Inside Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Medical Center, 53-year-old Rory Stevenson is unable to move, talk or eat.
The father of two, according to his family, is battling West Nile Virus.
"It's amazing how a small mosquito can knock somebody down," said his daughter Danielle Eggert while crying. "He's healthy, he's vibrant, he's such a great person and I can't believe how a mosquito can turn our world upside down."
Stevenson told family members he thought he had the flu, 14-days later he was admitted to the hospital.
"It was hard for him to speak, it got worse and worse throughout the night and eventually his words were scrambled," said his partner and mother to his children, Debbie Becker.
Stevenson had moved to Scottsdale in May for a new job.
"It was really a new life for him, he was excited, we were all excited and going to move here to be with him," said Becker.
Stevenson's family talked to him on a nightly basis after he moved from Washington state.
"He has the best attitude, the type that would walk into a restaurant and start talking to you like he's known you his whole life," said Eggert as she wiped tears from her eyes.
Family members were organizing their move as Stevenson lived in temporary housing waiting on their arrival.
"And so 14-days now he's been in the hospital," said Becker. "He's now in a coma, on life support and has a feeding tube."
Family members were struggling to get Stevenson back home to his entire family, until Aero-care Air Ambulance offered to transport Rory home free of charge.
"It was just tears when we heard. We feel so blessed," said Becker.
The family received offers from two organizations willing to provide transportation for Stevenson. The assistance not only helps Stevenson, but his sister who is in the middle of her own difficult battle.
"His mom and dad have driven here, which is a three day trip from Washington, but they have to return because his (Stevenson's) sister is battling cancer," said Becker.
Becker also says Stevenson is expecting his fourth grandchild.
"He walked me down the aisle and I just need to get him home, I can do so much, I just sit and I watch, I stare at him waiting on him to wake up, I just want him to wake up and hold hands," said Eggert.
Family members say it's unknown when exactly or where he was bitten by the mosquito.
"Doctors told us this kind of reaction for a healthy person happens in less than one percent of those who are bitten," said Becker.
The family plans on having Stevenson transported by Aero-care once his fever subsides. They hope he will be home in Washington by the end of the week.
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