Galli, R. Rescuing Jeffrey: A True Story

ISBN 13: 9780613624022

Rescuing Jeffrey: A True Story

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9780613624022: Rescuing Jeffrey: A True Story

On a perfect sunny July 4th afternoon, Richard Galli and his family were celebrating the holiday at the home of some friends. The kids were playing in the pool, and the grown-ups were relaxing. Then the unthinkable happened. Galli's seventeen-year-old son, Jeffrey, dove into the pool, struck his head, and nearly drowned. Although Galli saved his son's life, Jeffrey was paralyzed with a devastating spinal cord injury.

Rescuing Jeffrey is a compelling look at the next ten days. In this disarmingly honest account, Galli wrestles with a horrible predicament: Should he let his son live as a quadriplegic, unable to move or breathe on his own? Or should Galli "rescue" his son again-this time by removing Jeffrey's life support?

Galli weighs this question with intelligence and stark emotional intensity. For ten days he struggles to comprehend a future he never imagined for his son. During those ten days two parents are forced to make the most difficult decision of their lives. "I had brought my son back to life," Galli writes, "and then I had to find a way to kill him."

Although Galli assumes the burden of choosing death for his minor son, convincing others that the decision is correct, in the end that decision is taken away. Battered by bad luck, shock, and medication, unable even to lift a finger, Jeffrey finds the power to make the decision himself.

Rescuing Jeffrey is a bluntly eloquent story about tragedy and love and the choices we make at the brink of survival. It is a story that asks what, after all, is a life worth living?

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From the Inside Flap:

Rescuing Jeffrey is a harrowing and eloquent story about tragedy and love and the choices we make. It's the story of how life can change in an instant.

On a sunny July 4th afternoon, Richard Galli and his family were celebrating the holiday at the home of some friends. The kids were playing in the pool and the grown-ups were relaxing. Then the unthinkable happened. Galli's seventeen-year-old son dove into the pool, struck his head, and nearly drowned. Jeffrey's parents jumped in, heaved their son out of the water, and Galli saved his life. But Jeffrey had suffered a devastating spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from the neck down.

Rescuing Jeffrey is a compelling look at the next ten days. With disarming honesty and stark emotional intensity, Galli confronts these facts: His son will never be able to walk. He will never be able to use his hands. He will never be able to breathe without mechanical help. Jeffrey will be dependent on others for the rest of his life. Suddenly, Richard Galli is forced to see a future he never imagined for his son and has to decide whether to "rescue" him again-this time by removing Jeffrey's life support.

"I had brought my son back to life," he writes, "and then I had to find a way to kill him."

Galli presents a case to end Jeffrey's life-to his wife, to the doctors, and to the hospital ethics committee. But, in the end, he comes up against a force greater than any argument he can make. Battered by bad luck, unable to even move a finger, Jeffrey reclaims his own life.

Rescuing Jeffrey is a story about adversity, strength, and the support an anguished community shows at a time of crisis. It's a story that asks what, after all, is a life worth living?

From the Back Cover:

This is a beautifully written yet wrenching memoir. Galli tells his story bravely and with startling honesty. I felt, by the end, as if I too had walked his path and had been transformed. --Abraham Verghese, author of My Own Country and The Tennis Partner

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