A Lumberton teen was enjoying a care-free summer and having fun at Young Life camp when he became ill. He and his family had no idea how severely ill he would become in the days after he returned home.
According to Becky Tinsley, who organized the prayer vigil, when Braden Carter returned home from camp, he continued to fight an illness and was taken to Texas Children’s Hospital in Katy on Thursday, July 27. He was released from the hospital and went home. Friday morning, Braden took a turn for the worse and he was taken by ambulance to St. Elizabeth’s hospital. Because of his condition, he was put in a medically-induced coma and taken by Life Flight to Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston where he is currently being treated.
At this point, it appears that the young man has Epstein Barr and encephalitis; possibly other infections behind his ear. Thankfully, Braden has shown some improvement in the last few days.
Numerous people in the community have shown their support for Braden and his family during this time of crisis. Prayer is what was needed most and the community provided.
On Sunday, July 30, supporters gathered together, hand-in-hand, and formed a circle on the Lumberton ISD Raider football field, stretching from the end zone to the 40 yard line to pray for Braden and his family.
Lumberton ISD Athletic Director Chris Babin showed up to support Braden.
“You can tell by the turnout already that he’s a great kid, a likeable kid, and a kid that makes an impact on a lot of people.”
Babin said, “I was up at the hospital today and saw him. I told his parents before I left that you’ll see by the turnout of support today at the field how much of an impact he has on the people around him”
Josh Ruiz with Lumberton Young Life spoke to the crowd. “I had a chance to spend a week with Braden just a few weeks ago at Young Life camp. It was so fun just to see Braden loving life. That was the first time that Braden started feeling bad,” he said.
Ruiz shared a verse, Hebrews 11:1, “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
Those who wish to help the family with expenses can donate at https://www.gofundme.com/standing-with-braden
Braden's mother, Tarin Starnes responded to the support saying, "I just want our friends, community, and school to know how much their prayers, love, and support have meant to us. It's really not possible to put into words how grateful and appreciative that we are. I know that Braden seeing all of those people caring so much about him getting well and back to Lumberton, had a big impact on how quickly he is being released from the hospital. I am forever humbled and grateful to everyone who came together prayed and prayed in the stadium that is such a huge part of his life. I have to give special thanks to Becky Tinsley, Coach Babin and YL Leader Josh Ruiz."