A local high school basketball coach has returned home following months of fighting COVID-19.
Twelve weeks and six days exact is how long Fort Cobb-Broxton Basketball Coach Scott Hines spent in the hospital and rehab.
A majority of the time, Hines was on a ventilator and a life support machine called an Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machine.
Hines credits an ex-player of his that brought him to a Chickasha hospital when he was having a hard time breathing.
“I'm telling him on the way, you (have got to) get me there quick buddy, I’m in trouble,” said Hines. “He said ‘I know you are coach; we’ll get you there. Trust me. We'll get you there.’ I don't know how I’ll ever thank those people.”
Hines was eventually taken to Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City.
“There were some times where giving up crossed my mind,” said Hines. “I’ve got to be honest with you.”
But Hines didn't give up and neither did the place he calls home. Dozens gathered outside the high school and were ready to finally welcome the coach home in the most socially distanced way possible, a drive-thru parade.
“This is going to be a tribute to him, a welcome home,” said Kyle Lierle, Superintendent of Fort Cobb-Broxton Public Schools. “We've worked together for over 25 years and you know it’s just going to be good to actually see him in person and know that we are going to get him back to work.”
Led by first responders, family watched on from the front yard. People drove by yelling and honking, all for the opportunity to see Coach Hines fully recovered.
“When you start thinking about your family and kids, parents, and you know, one thing I remember thinking was I might have grandkids one day and I would like to meet them,” said Hines. “That just kept me going. I could feel the love and the power of prayer.”
As for Coach Hines, he said he'll sum it all up as the best day of his life.
“I feel like I’ve been to hell and back (and I) kind of have, but it was worth it seeing all these people,” said Hines. “It was worth it. The pain and suffering I went through; it was worth it.”
COVID-19 has caused Scott to lose nearly 60 pounds and need a walker to get around.
Each day he continues getting stronger thanks to help of continuous rehab appointments.