SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) — A missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is recovering from severe wounds after he was stabbed in Colombia on Friday, Feb. 24.
Maxwell Fish, a 19-year-old missionary serving in Popayan, Colombia, was reportedly stabbed in the collarbone area, hitting an artery. His companion pulled him to a member of the church’s home and the member drove them to a hospital.
Fish’s parents flew out to care for him on Friday and have been posting updates and prayer requests throughout the weekend on social media. Nichole Lybbert Fish, Maxwell’s mother, said “messages are coming from literally around the globe” as news spread of her son’s critical condition.
Surgeons in Colombia induced a coma and performed multiple surgeries to reconstruct the artery, repair the veins and replace the collar bone. Nichole Lybbert Fish, Maxwell’s mother, reported that the surgery was a “complete success” and thanked everyone from around the world who prayed on their behalf.
“We left Max and staying in a hotel close by. We are being upheld and sustained through your prayers. It’s not been an easy day but we are held together by y’all prayers for our family. Thank you,” Nichole Fish wrote.
As of Nichole Fish’s last update seven hours ago, Maxwell is still in a coma but doctors said they plan to slowly wake him up. His blood is flowing properly and they will not need to amputate his arm.
“This scary part is done and more healing to come,” she wrote in a post.
Sam Penrod, a spokesperson for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said the following statement:
Two missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, serving in the Colombia Cali mission were the victims of a robbery and assault. Early Friday morning, they were attacked in the street and one missionary was stabbed in the neck. Elder Maxwell Fish, age 19, of San Antonio, Texas, is listed serious but stable condition, after undergoing multiple surgeries. His companion was not physically harmed and is receiving counseling. Other missionaries in the vicinity of this crime have been moved out of the area as a precaution. Our prayers are with these missionaries and their families, that they may be strengthened and healed during this difficult time.
A GoFundMe page was organized for the family to help with the associated costs. You can access the GoFundMe fundraiser here.