Stephen Parker is a father-of-two from Sugar City, Idaho, and in the backyard of his family home he kept a bunch of cars. Then one day in July 2016, he asked his 17-year-old son, Mason, and eight-year-old son, JT, to help him with a job.
Parker wanted his boys to assist him with some maintenance on one of the cars. The particular car, a Toyota Prius, was heavy, so he needed the extra hands, and the team quickly got to work.
The three of them managed to get the car jacked up without any major difficulties. But then 17-year-old Mason cut his hand and headed back into the house to clean up his wound. This meant that there was only eight-year-old Mason left outside helping his dad.
At this point, Stephen had climbed underneath the Prius in order to remove the axles. “The one axle came off pretty easily, but the other side wasn’t coming off,” he told East Idaho News. And, unfortunately, removing the remaining axle didn’t go quite as planned.
While Stephen tried to complete the job, he moved the jack. Little did he know at the time, though, how ill-advised a decision this would turn out to be. Suddenly, the whole car fell.
And it wasn’t just that the car fell – but that it fell directly onto Stephen, who was lying underneath it. With only his eight-year-old son there to help him, then, Stephen realized that he was in serious trouble.
In an interview with East Idaho News, Stephen recalled the horrifying moment when he realized that he needed some help. “I couldn’t move at all. I was totally trapped,” he said. Struggling to breathe and losing consciousness, then, he knew his situation was desperate.
Still, the trapped dad didn’t want to shock his young son, so he didn’t call out for help immediately. Stephen also didn’t want JT to feel guilty if he wasn’t able to save his father. Soon, however, he had to accept that asking JT for assistance was his only option.
So eventually, Stephen called out to the eight-year-old, yelling, “Jack it up quick! Jack it up quick!” In his heart, though, he was sure that JT wouldn’t be strong enough to do it all by himself. After all, it had required the strength of both Stephen and his eldest son, Mason, to manage the job in the first place.
Little JT nevertheless followed his father’s instructions and got started with trying to jack the car back up. However, the eight-year-old weighed only 50 pounds, and it seemed very unlikely that he would succeed.
Even so, the little trooper kept on trying. And, what’s more, he had the clever idea of jumping on the handle to exert more force. Meanwhile, JT’s father had passed out under the car that was crushing him. That’s when the incredible happened.
Against all the odds, after a few minutes of trying, the quick-thinking eight-year-old managed to raise the car. JT then ran to get his big brother, Mason, and the emergency services were called.
In a recording of that fateful phone call, Mason can be heard instructing his father to breathe. “I know it hurts, but you gotta do it,” he implored his dad. Stephen managed to reply, “I can’t.”
Then, Stephen’s wife, Jodi, came home and saw the terrible condition that he was in. “My heart just sank, and I didn’t know what to expect,” she told East Idaho News. An emergency helicopter soon arrived, though, and whisked Stephen off to the Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center.
Scans revealed that Stephen had broken a total of 13 ribs. Incredibly, he hadn’t suffered any further serious injuries in the accident. His brave young son had indeed saved him from a terrible fate.
However, the strangest part of the story took place after Stephen had come home from the hospital. Stephen and Jodi asked JT to show them how he had jacked up the car – but he simply wasn’t able to do it. The Parkers thus began to think that a higher force had played a part on that fateful day in July 2016.
“We believe my grandpa, who passed on, and my sister, who died, were helping him,” Stephen said. And when JT was asked how he had found the strength to lift the car, his reply was “Angels.”
“It was scary, and I didn’t think that I could jack the car up, but I just kept on trying,” the courageous JT added. Meanwhile, the Parkers’ story has caught the attention of more than just the local media. Indeed, JT was recently recognized for his actions by the American Red Cross of Greater Idaho.
Subsequently, in March 2017, the eight-year-old was awarded the title of “East Idaho Real Hero.” He is currently one of only 11 people to have been selected for this honor. Unsurprisingly, then, the little hero was greeted with a standing ovation as he was handed his prize.
JT’s mom, Jodi, is still convinced that what happened was a miracle. “There’s no way that a little boy could have done that,” she claimed. “I just felt that it was a responsibility we now have to tell people that miracles still exist.” And whether you believe in miracles or not, it’s undeniable that what little JT did to save his dad was amazing.