Dying and Living


Becky-Church-PictureHave you ever died and lived in the same day?   My name is Becky Carden and I have. On July 21, 1951, a miracle happened: I was declared dead, and then I was brought back to life. My poor mother almost died too.   The doctor declared me dead and said, “We have to save the mother,” but there just happened to be a student nurse there that day. She picked me up, massaged my heart, and then dipped me in ice water. By some miracle, I took my first breath!

During this time, my mother lost consciousness, and the last thing that she heard was “The baby is dead!” My mother had had several miscarriages before I was born. She also almost had a miscarriage with me, so she almost lost me twice. Can you imagine how she felt when she regained consciousness and I was alive?   I know that she must have been the happiest person in the world. She loved me with all her heart and soul.

I know I had an angel in the room with me that day who saved my life. I was fortunately able to talk to that nurse on the phone a few years ago, but sadly, I wasn’t able to meet with her in person.  She has since passed away, but I did go to the cemetery to pay my respects and to put flowers on her grave.

My nurse’s name was Reba, and though my mother had planned on naming me after my two grandmothers, she decided to name me Rebecca because it  contains the letters of Reba in it. I am honored to be named for Reba, and she will be my forever angel. I am fortunate to be alive today to tell my story.

– Submitted by Rebecca Carden

medical symbolFurther Links:

* Interested in the history of nursing?

* Celebrate National Nurse’s Week or Doctor’s Day

* Thinking about volunteering at a hospital?