He Asked Doctors to Pull the Plug. Then His Reason to Live Walked Into the Room.
Ken Worrall became a quadriplegic after a construction accident about 20 years ago. When doctors told him he’d be paralyzed for the rest of his life, his depression initially got the best of him. He decided he wanted to be disconnected from life support. But he didn’t go through with that decision.
“My ex-wife and kids came in and, as soon as I saw them, my life changed,” Worrall says in the video below. “There was no way I was disconnecting myself. I just saw a vision of seeing my kids grow up and getting married and having grandchildren. I have three grandchildren now, so my dreams have come true.”
Since then, he’s also found the courage and inspiration to fight on thanks to the vibrant community on video game-streaming site Twitch. Before his accident, Worrall was a light gamer, sticking the basics like “Mario Cart.” Afterwards, he discovered a controller that was built specifically for quadriplegics — a joystick his mouth could control; he can sip and puff to left and right click. It wasn’t long before he became quite skilled at games like “Diablo III,” “World of Warcraft” and “League of Legends.”
After a while, he gave Twitch a shot. Twitch allows its 55 million users to stream their video games live or edit their games into specific segments for fans to view. Its community is so vast that it accounts for nearly 2 percent of all web traffic in the U.S. during its peak hours, according the The Wall Street Journal. Amazon purchased the company on Monday, Aug. 25 for $970 million, Business Insider reports.
“The first day I started streaming, I really didn’t think I’d like it or keep on doing it. But I was feeling comfortable and people kept on responding to me saying I’m an inspiration and so forth,” Worrall says in the video below. “So my confidence started building real quick, and I was like ‘I’m liking this, I’m really feeling good about myself. I’m doing the thing that I love. Why not keep doing it?’”
Through Twitch, Worrall has found a way to connect with a supportive community — something that means the world to a man in his difficult situation.
“You viewers out there, you’re making me feel incredible,” he says in the clip. “I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart.”
You can hear about Worall’s journey in his own words in the video above. You can also follow him on Twitch or donate to help him pay for a trip to BlizzConn, a gaming convention, and upkeep on his medical equipment.