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When They Turned Off A Disabled Teen’s Life Support, A Heroic Stranger Came To His Rescue

WXYZ / CNN

Some of my closest relatives have struggled to pay their medical bills these past few years, so I know just how stressful it can be.

The last thing a sick person and their family need to think about is how they're going to keep their lights on.    

That's what makes this story out of Clinton Township, Michigan so heartbreaking. But a hero stepped in just when he was needed most, and we can all take inspiration from his act of kindness.    

Christy Stone and her husband Guy had been struggling to pay their bills in 2016.

With job losses and car payments, the couple were working hard to make ends meet and support their five children.

As if that wasn't hard enough, two of Christy's sons had muscular dystrophy, and 18-year-old Troy's case was so severe he needed an electric ventilator to breathe.

Christy Stone and her son Troy.WXYZ

The seven machines needed to keep the ventilator running tripled the family's bill.

Because Troy would die without the ventilator, the Stones had even given a doctor's letter explaining his case to the local power company.

But that didn't stop them from turning the couple's power off when they fell behind on their bills - Christy says a missing doctor's signature was the reason the letter was ignored.

When the power was turned off, Christy found herself in a race against the clock to get Troy to a hospital.

The machine's battery had just hours left when firefighters arrived at her home to help Troy.

But one of those firefighters, Ryan McCuen, turned out to be an angel in disguise.

McCuen later described the desperate scene he walked in on to CNN:

Stone was in a panic, Troy's ventilator was down to three hours of battery life, and the house was dark.

The firefighter says that once Stone explained her situation to him, it "seemed obvious what the solution was, that they needed their bill paid."

So he paid it.

McCuen covered the $1,023 bill out of his own pocket, after driving Troy to a nearby hospital.

Less than 20 minutes later Stone's lights were on, and Troy was able to move back home later that day,

McCuen tried to keep his act of kindness a secret. ABC News

"I'm still speechless," Stone said about the act of kindness. "It's like a dream. I can't believe any of this is happening."

Even Troy, who can barely speak, told reporters, "Ryan is my hero."

But McCuen was humble too. He tried to keep his good deed private, until his fire chief heard about the story and told reporters.

Luckily, others were inspired by McCuen's generous spirit, donating their own money - and a backup generator - to support Troy.

Sadly, Troy died later that same year. But he's still remembered for inspiring an act of kindness that touches us all.

Rest in peace Troy, and thank you Ryan for everything!

[H/T: ABC News, CNN]

I write about all sorts of things for Shared, especially weird facts, celebrity news, and viral stories. CONTACT: zachary@shared.com