South Bend man diagnosed with sepsis survives; hundreds attend fundraiser

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - A South Bend man diagnosed with a life-threatening medical issue miraculously survived.

Saturday, hundreds attended a fundraiser to help with medical bills.

Last year, 28-year-old Terrence Szczechowski was hanging out with his wife and some friends, when he started feeling sick.

Parts of his body even turned purple.

His wife Brittany Szczechowski rushed him to the emergency room.

"I thought I was just going into the ER to get some medication because we had a little three-month-old girl at the house and I didn't want to get her sick," Szczechowski said.

However, things quickly took a turn for the worse, as his liver, kidneys and heart had stopped working correctly.

Szczechowski was airlifted to a hospital in Indianapolis.

"They didn't know what was going to happen that night and if Terry was still going to be with us," Szczechowski said.

Szczechowski was diagnosed with sepsis, a blood infection that takes over your whole body, and another disease called disseminated intravascular coagulation, when blood clots develop throughout your bloodstream.

Doctors had to amputate both feet.

The fact that Szczechowski survived is nothing short of miraculous.

"I don't have any function in my hands, so [my wife] has to do everything for me from feeding me and bathing me," Szczechowski said.

Szczechowski is hoping his hands will heal one day, but if not doctors will try prosthetics.

"I would rather plan for prosthetics any day than plan a funeral," Szczechowski said.

The Szczechowski's have been able to look on the bright side throughout this entire experience.

"Can't get anywhere in life without a positive attitude because if I didn't have a positive attitude, I could have just sat there and rotted in the hospital bed," Szczechowski said.

"The only way we make it through is honestly with our family and friends," Szczechowski said.

In fact, it was their family and friends who organized the Mullet Strong Trivia Benefit Dinner Saturday.

The fundraiser will help with medical bills.

In the meantime, they are pressing forward, and have high hopes for the future.

"He can be fully functioning again one day. It's going to take a lot of time, but he'll get there," Szczechowski said.

They hope to raise at least $20,000 from Saturday's fundraiser.

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