Six months ago Corona del Sol’s junior lineman Keona Peat wasn’t sure he’d ever get to play football again. Peat broke his leg at basketball practice and later went to Chandler Regional Hospital for routine surgery. However, due to an allergic reaction to a medication, the surgery was nearly fatal.
“My body went under anaphylactic shock and my lungs, my oxygen levels just dropped all the way down,” said Peat. “So they had to intubate me with a breathing tube.”
Peat spent four days in the ICU in a medically induced coma and didn’t know what he had gone through until he woke up four days after the original surgery occurred.
“The last thing I remember, they told me, ‘alright we’ll see you in a few hours,” Peat said. “My mom told me everything that happened and my leg was still broken.”
In the three weeks Peat spent in the hospital he suffered from severe nerve damage, excessive swelling, some loss of mobility in his left arm, and doctors were forced to paralyze his left vocal cord. When he was finally discharged from the hospital he left with a feeding tube he would use for two months. However, despite everything he endured, his main priority was to return to playing football at Corona del Sol. Fortunately for Peat, he had a team of people supporting him on his journey back to the gridiron.
I’m extremely blessed to be alive today and to be able to play in my last 3 games of the regular season. pic.twitter.com/KOrMzY8t0t
— Keona Peat (@KeonaPeat) November 7, 2021
“My mom was probably my biggest support system while I was in the hospital,” Peat said. “She spent every night with me sleeping on the chair next to me.”
Peat’s teammate and best friend Jovin Gomez was also by his side throughout his recovery.
“I was heartbroken,” Gomez said. “I felt for him so much and I just made sure I was there in any way possible to support him.”
Peat said Gomez brought him things while he was at the hospital and would receive texts from him and Gomez’s dad daily. Gomez also helped encourage Peat when he was ready to start playing football again. Peat was anxious to start playing with his teammates again but had to learn to be patient while he was recovering.
Peat’s dad preached patience to his son because he feared he would injure himself if he started playing too soon. However, with plenty of support from his teammates, friends, family, and coaches, Peat was able to return to the football field in time to play in the final three games of his junior season.
“I’m always going to work hard no matter what, especially after something like that,” Peat said. “It taught myself to be grateful for what I have cause you never know when it could be taken away from you.”