SANTA TERESA, New Mexico -- For a southern New Mexico high school coach, the last year was a game changer.
Art Aguirre spent more than a month unconscious, recovering from Covid-19. He's now back on the court and his team is competing in the state tournament.
Aguirre is the volleyball coach at Santa Teresa High School. He says last September, he wasn't feeling well but didn't have a fever. After practice, he went to urgent care. He tested positive for Covid-19. Within 24 hours, he was in an ambulance on the way to the hospital, when he passed out. He didn't wake up until November.
"I had been out for six weeks and everything was just black. I didn't remember anything, anything whatsoever," he told ABC affiliate KOAT.
Art says his body was fighting Covid-19. When he woke up in November, he was on a feeding tube. He couldn't walk. He spent the next month in the hospital. He went back to work in January and is back coaching. When the coach talks now, the kids lean in and listen. Art's vocal cords were damaged from a tracheotomy.
"The girls have gotten used to my voice but when I speak to people that don't know me or that knew me with my voice before they first look at me like, what?"
He says the nurses told him it was a miracle he was still alive after so much time in the ICU.
"It just wasn't my time to go. God just decided it's just not my time he had better plans for me," he said.
He also said he's very thankful for all the support he's received from his colleagues and the community.