Over 20 years ago, St. Louis resident Brian Stewart injected his infant son with HIV-tainted blood.
When his unfathomably evil act came to light, Stewart was sentenced to life in prison and called “the worst kind of criminal” by the presiding judge. Asked why he would inject his son with the deadly virus, Stewart said he wanted to kill his son in order to avoid paying child support.
The infant, now 22-year-old Brryan Jackson, contracted full-blown AIDS by the age of five. Doctors gave him five months to live.
“Anyone in my condition would die in three months, they gave me five,” Jackson said.
The side effects from his medicine were terrible – Brryan lost 70% of his hearing from his treatments. As a five-year-old child, Brryan was taking 23 different pills, two IV bags, and three injections daily.
Five months passed, and Brryan was still alive. Another year passed, and he was still fighting. Fast-forward 20 years and here Brryan is, not only alive, but healthier than ever. The virus has been undetectable in his system for the past five years – something doctors have called a miracle recovery.
“I went from 23 pills to just one pill a day and now I'm undetectable, my T-cell count has been up, giving me zero per cent chance of passing on the virus,” Brryan said to St. Louis news station KPLR-11.
Brryan now spends his time promoting AIDS awareness through his Hope is Vital organization. The organizations aims to “Promote educations on HIV/AIDS in order to prevent the spread of HIV, disband myths and reduce negative stigma related to being HIV positive.”
Brryan admitted to KLPR that, at many times, his journey has been too much to handle. He contemplated suicide several times. But through it all, Brryan credits his Christian faith with giving him the strength to keep going.
He says he has forgiven his father as well – a move that to most seems just as miraculous as his survival.
“I think that there is salvation for everyone, and I find myself sometimes praying for my father’s salvation.”