- - Wednesday, December 26, 2012

ORLANDO, Fla. — A faint cry.

That’s all Vinise Capers heard when she returned home that day. By the time she found her baby son, Daishawn, it was almost too late.

Daishawn was laying behind a bed with a pile of blankets heaped on top of him, covering his face. The lives of Capers and her four children were forever changed.

Daishawn was back there taking his last breath,” Capers said. “Pretty devastating. His journey since then has been very difficult for him and, for us, difficult to watch.”

Vinise had left Daishawn with his father, who left him alone with a young cousin. How the baby ended up behind the bed, smothered by covers is unclear. But that’s where Vinise found him, his brain deprived of oxygen for an unknown period of time.

Daishawn spent 30 days in a coma. He survived, but is severely disabled. Now 22, he is in a wheelchair, can’t use one arm, is legally blind and struggles cognitively.

“When I found him, he was clinically dead,” Capers said. “They didn’t expect him to live.”

Kyshoen Jarrett had yet to be born when Daishawn had his accident at the family’s home in Staten Island, N.Y.

When Capers divorced Jarrett’s father, she and her four sons moved to Tannersville, Pa. Jarrett was five years old.

As he grew up, Jarrett, now a sophomore safety on the Virginia Tech football team, was instilled with one value above all others: Family takes care of family.

Jarrett’s father never was in the picture. Neither was the father of Charles, Charod and Daishawn Capers, his three half-brothers.

Vinise worked full-time as a teacher while raising four boys, including seriously handicapped Daishawn. So Charles played the role of father — or ‘Pops’ as Kyshoen calls him — to his younger siblings.

When he was old enough, Kyshoen helped his family care for Daishawn.

“For me, helping take care of him was never an issue,” Kyshoen, now 19, said. “I learned that from my brothers.”

After his brothers finished high school and left home, Kyshoen took over the task of assisting his mother with caring for Daishawn. He’d get up an hour early before school to help bathe, dress and feed Daishawn, a chore that became more cumbersome as Daishawn got older and bigger.

Story Continues →