Francis Yafrate's Story

Believing is Seeing

Francis Yafrate and Caregivers

Sometimes, it takes a harrowing journey to the precipice to give you perspective on what truly matters. Such is the amazing story of Francis Yafrate.

What began as a painful kidney stone one night last fall turned into a serious life-threatening infection that overtook his major organs and put him in septic shock. Basically, Fran was on death’s door. His wife Maryalice Yafrate was with him in South Shore Hospital’s Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU), where she was told Fran would need “immediate intervention of monumental proportions with a team of infectious disease professionals to treat the infection.”

Fortunately, Fran was in the right place.

He was placed in a medically-induced coma so the bacteria could best be attacked with medications and fluids. However, the setbacks continued. First, his heart stopped. Then, his kidneys failed. After several days, phrases like “vegetative state,” and “permanent brain damage” were being used. Through it all Maryalice, her family members and faith-community friends prayed for a miracle while watching in awe as the doctors and nurses worked skillfully and diligently trying to save Fran’s life. The medical team was led by Urologist John Feldman, M.D., Infectious Disease Specialist Todd Ellerin, M.D. and several additional ICU physicians and nurses.

Finally, miraculously, Fran responded when Maryalice spoke to him and squeezed his hand. “The medical team rushed in and cheered, cried, laughed and danced with me,” Maryalice said. “God and medicine met hand-in-hand.”

The Yafrates expressed their gratitude by making a donation to South Shore Hospital to honor their caregivers. And they plan to make more going forward. “We will forever be grateful for the brilliance, patience, kindness and love that saved Fran’s life,” Maryalice said.


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