Alumni, Campus wide, College of Business

Dewees family experiences miracle

By SarahBeth McKenzie | June 26, 2020

In Ezekiel 36:26 it says, “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you…” Charleston Southern University alum James Dewees lived through this promise in a much more literal way than most. 

Dewees graduated in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in business management. He has since then worked his way to a Lean Practitioner position at Boeing, where he still is today. Dewees and his wife, Dr. Bridget Dewees, discovered in 2010 that he had congestive heart failure. This discovery came shortly before he almost lost his life to a major heart arrhythmia in 2011. Thankfully, he recovered from these events and continued on as normal for the next six years.

James Dewees is a 2006 graduate of Charleston Southern University. His book ICU God speaks about his experience in ICU.
Photo provided

In 2017, the Dewees family began to walk through another series of difficulties. James’ heart started failing again in the fall of 2017. In August of 2017, he had almost 35 pounds of fluid removed from around his heart. In April, he would be admitted to the hospital in need of a transplant. This was extremely difficult on both James and Bridgett, but they chose to make the best of the situation they had been placed in. They set their minds to transforming their environment, holding tightly to God’s promises and blessing others while they waited for their blessings to come. The blessing came on the weekend of their 28th wedding anniversary and 65 days after James was admitted to ICU. They received the news that a heart had been found.

Photo provided

God had been working so miraculously through this entire experience and continued to do so. In the midst of James’ transplant, as blood began to pump though his new heart, the heart began beating on its own. This confirmed to them both that the purpose of everything they had experienced was to bring glory to God. There was no doubt in their minds that God was at the center of it all. 

“I’ve seen miracles,” James said. “I’ve seen God do so many different things throughout my life, but I had never been in a place where I had to face a mountain and not know how I was going to get over it. I had to put my trust in God.” And he encourages anyone struggling with a tough decision to do the same. Trust and believe in the word of God, and never forget to give Him praise. 

James and Bridget have written books about the 65 days James spent in ICU and the entire experience. They also speak frequently about the experience. Learn more at

SarahBeth McKenzie ’20 is a recent graduate of Charleston Southern University and served as a brand ambassador for the Office of Marketing & Communication.

Related Stories

Charleston Southern beat national record for most Operation Christmas Child boxes packed in 2019 CSU sets OCC packing goal to 7,000 boxes

CSU sets OCC packing goal to 7,000 boxes

With the end of the fall semester in short range, students, faculty and staff se...

| READ MORE: CSU sets OCC packing goal to 7,000 boxes
Life on campus during the pandemic View from inside the new “normal”

View from inside the new “normal”

Returning to school in the midst of a pandemic has impacted academic and student...

| READ MORE: View from inside the new “normal”