Ben Breedlove, 18, died on of a heart attack on Christmas Day, but his legacy and his bravery will live on through the two YouTube videos that he posted a week before his death.
Breedlove, who describes his life through index cards, while Gary Jules’ “Mad World” plays in the background in a two part YouTube video, has suffered from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy all his life. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a condition identified by the thickening of the heart muscle that makes it hard for the organ to pump blood.
In his videos, Breedlove talks about his condition and the three times he cheated death, the first time, Breedlove was 4 and had a life threatening seizure. Breedlove tells us that he doesn’t remember much from that day with the exception of one thing.
As he was being wheeled down the hospital by nurses, he describes seeing a bright light. When he pointed it out to nurses and his mother, they told him they didn’t see anything, but Breedlove felt an overwhelming sense of relaxation.
On the index cards, Breedlove wrote, “I had no worries at all, like nothing in the world mattered.” Breedlove explained that he would never forget how peaceful he felt.
In the summer of 2011, while he was in surgery for his tonsils, Breedlove went into cardiac arrest. He called it the second time he was able to “cheat death.” Amazingly, doctors were able to save Breedlove’s life for a second time. “I was scared to die, but I’m SO glad I didn’t,” he wrote.
The third time Breedlove cheated death was Dec. 6, while at school, Breedlove felt like he was going to faint so he sat on a bench and passed out. He awakened shortly to see EMS’ surrounding him before passing out again.
“My heart stopped and I wasn’t breathing for 3 MINUTES,” he wrote. He goes on to describe how he heard EMS say he wasn’t breathing, his heart had stopped and he no longer had a pulse. “When peoples bodies ‘die,’ the brain still works for a short time,” Breedlove wrote.
During his latest collapse, Breedlove describes that while he was unconscious he was in a white room with his favorite rapper Kid Cudi, feeling the same peaceful feeling he felt when he was 4. “Why he was the only one there with me, I’m still trying to figure out.”
Breedlove describes looking at himself and Cudi in a mirror, feeling proud of himself and everything he has had done in his life. “It was the BEST feeling,” he wrote.
Breedlove woke up to EMS doing CPR but wrote that he wish he had never left the white room.
Breedlove signed off asking a simple question, “Do you believe in Angels or God? I do.”