BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Jace Broome just turned a year old, and he is a patient at Children’s of Alabama hospital right now.
Broome’s parents tell CBS42 News their little boy’s young life is one of many Kyle Mabrey helped change for the better before his tragic death in a car crash involving a train on early Monday morning.
Broome was born at 24 weeks last February, and he spent his entire life at Children’s of Alabama where he was just moved out of the ICU for the first time three weeks ago.
His parents say those weeks have been marked with incredible progress — thanks to Mabrey.
“Jace immediately smiled when he came over and started talking to him,” said Katie Broome, Jace’s mother. “Made him relax and just talked to him, ‘Hey buddy how are you today?’ and just very comforting.”
Mabrey was a respiratory therapist whose SUV fell from an overpass on 459 in Bessemer and landed on a railroad track. The vehicle was then hit by a passing train.
He was 42 years old – and loved to fish, but Katie says that his work at the hospital was what made the difference.
“I know he was known in the fishing world,” Katie said. “Not a lot of people knew what kind of person he was at work — a wonderful respiratory therapist, and just connected with the patients and with the family members.”
The loss will take some getting adjustment for those that loved him.
“Just to talk to this person on Friday, and expected to see him the following week when he returned to work, it was a big shock,” Katie said. “And it’s been a big shock up there for everyone today.”
Mabrey is survived by his two kids, and his wife who also works at the hospital.
Friends of the Mabreys tell us a GoFundMe has been set up in his memory. Click or tap here to visit the memorial fund.