By MAMAMIA TEAM
When Brryan Jackson was just 11 months old, his father injected him with the HIV virus.
It was 1992 and Brryan’s father Brian Stewart was working as a blood transfusion specialist. Brian injected his son with HIV-tainted blood in the hopes that it would kill his son.
He wanted his son to die so that he wouldn’t have to pay child support.
When authorities discovered what Brian had done, a court sentenced him to life in prison. The judge who gave him the sentence called Brian the ‘worst kind of war criminal’.
At age five, Brryan then developed AIDS.
His mother was told he would not live past the age of six.
The medications Brryan was taking – which at one point included 23 oral pills, two IV bags and three injections a day – caused him to lose 70 percent of his hearing.
But Brryan kept on living. He changed his name from ‘Brian’ to ‘Brryan’ when he was growing up, in order to separate himself from his father’s identity.
And now he’s 22 years old.
For the past five years the virus has been undetectable in his body – which doctors have called miraculous.
But what is also miraculous, is that Brryan says he forgives the father who once tried to kill him.
Brryan says that his Christian faith is what has allowed him to practice forgiveness, and look towards the future.
In an interview with KPLR, Brryan said: “I think there is salvation for everyone, and I find myself praying for his salvation.”
Brryan also admitted that he had struggled with suicidal thoughts in the past. “’I had three knives in front of me and thought, why me? Why me?” Brryan said. “But I realised there is hope, and it’s not about what you have it’s what you can give.”
For now, Brryan is giving back by promoting HIV/AIDS awareness, in the hopes that he can help remove the stigma attached to the infection.
If you would like to donate to AIDS research and support, you can consider donating to the Australian Infectious Diseases Research Centre.