A mother was in tears as she thanked blood donors who were strangers to her son when they donated blood that helped to save his life in a near-fatal crash.
Jorge Sincuirs was rushed to the emergency room with a shattered pelvis, broken hip and broken arm after a car crash.
He needed 32 units of blood — each unit is about one pint — just to get through a series of surgeries, or he would bleed to death.
Top news of the day
For comparison, there are about 10 pints of blood in an adult's body.
"I don't remember anything. I remember waking up a couples days later at hospital," Jorge said. "I should be dead. I probably shouldn't be walking."
Ingrid Sincuirs, Jorge's mother, acknowledges that the doctors were obviously instrumental in saving her son. But the donors made all the difference.
"The doctors have a lot of experience and technology, but if they don't have blood they cannot do anything!" Ingrid said.
The wheelchair, walker and cane were no longer needed Wednesday when Jorge met several of the 27 donors who helped saved his life.
He said he had a new lease on life thanks to the strangers who donated O positive blood at the UCLA Blood and Platelet Center.
Jorge himself had donated blood more than a dozen times on his way to class at UCLA in the past.
In the biggest twist of fate, he said it was the right thing to do despite it being against his mother's wishes.
"I never thought much of my donations," Jorge said. "I never thought I'd be standing in front of you today I never thought I'd be the one needing the blood."
His mother, of course, had a change of heart after the transfusions saved her son's life.
"To date, there is no substitute for donated blood," Dr. Henry Cryer lll, a trauma surgeon, said.
Jorge said he is nine weeks away from becoming a clinic's laboratory scientist working with blood.
"To follow full circle, people who donate blood — it will come to me so I can process it to give to the patient. This is wild!" Jorge said. "Funny how life works out."