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Woman who once weighed 79 lbs. saved by strangers

Woman Who Once Weighed 79 Pounds Now Happy, Healthy

At just 79 pounds, 23-year-old Lauryn Lax was literally exercising herself to death. That's when nine fellow gym members who had watched her deteriorate stepped in. "Good Morning America" has more on their lifesaving intervention.



'We saw a girl that was about to die. This group of friends and strangers from the gym planned to take Lauryn to the hospital.'

'I call them my angels,' Lauren says.

Those nine strangers surrounded her one morning in August 2011 before one of her daily workouts.

According to The Tennessean, Lax insisted she was okay, but the group wouldn't give up. She finally agreed to let them take her to a nearby hospital in Nashville. Little did she know, her parents were also on their way.

This was only the very beginning of Lax's recovery. When she arrived, doctors said her heart rate was so slow, she might need a pacemaker.

Daily Mail reports Lax spent three days in intensive care before spending three and a half weeks in the cardiac unit and another 11 months at a treatment center.

But that was three years ago and the now 26-year-old Lax is happy, healthy and gearing up to graduate from college in May.

Lax's story has struck a chord with people all over the web. One Facebook user commented,

'What a brave woman to allow her story to be told in the paper. And what angels to step in to save her life!

Another commented on the Daily Mail saying, 'What a transformation! Just shows how great the human race can be with this incredible show of concern and kindness to a complete stranger.'

Lax told "Good Morning America" she hopes to pay it forward by helping those who are also struggling with eating disorders.

Join the discussion

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Cindy March 29 2014 at 6:13 AM

Definitely restores your faith in humanity.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
dirtyturtle23 March 29 2014 at 12:00 PM

Thank goodness other members stepped in. When I worked at a chain gym we were not allowed to say anything to clients, and speaking to someone else to me felt like talking behind their back. No one was ever about to pas out but I have seen some young girls whittle themselves down to nothing and still want further. I also saw to mid age women also almost get into a fight for elliptical machines. Gyms are interesting places.

Flag Reply +5 rate up
Tricia March 29 2014 at 11:54 AM

What a great start to my day! People caring more about saving a woman's life than whether or not she will hate them for intruding. I want to hear more stories like this!

Flag Reply +10 rate up
positiveteam March 29 2014 at 5:31 PM

when "angels" exceed the mooches, takers, thugs, and parasites, the world is awesome!

Flag Reply +9 rate up
aveeris523 March 29 2014 at 11:24 AM

Anorexia doesn't just starve the body, it also starves the brain. Depressed brain function and delusions about body fat feed off each in a downward spiral. I'm glad she got help and is now healthy!

Flag Reply +15 rate up
cpruitt221 March 29 2014 at 11:12 AM

During the teens and through the early twenties many young people use exercise and weight control to help them deal with the stresses in their life. It is one thing they can control. Of course, you see people at all ages who are doing this, but earlier in life we don't learn other ways to deal with those stresses. She was very fortunate that these people stepped in. Family so many times is kept at arms length by their older children and cannot see what is happening to them.

Flag Reply +8 rate up
belldn3 March 29 2014 at 7:23 PM

Seventy-nine pounds..........DAMN!

Flag Reply +1 rate up
Hey GRAM DAWG March 29 2014 at 10:39 AM

These are definitely "Angels" on earth. Thank heaven there are still people like them who will step up to help someone. We have an overabundance of those who "don't want to get involved." Use common sense to know when to speak up. When a life is at stake, we HAVE to help.
The societal pressures on women are unforgivable. We must assure our daughters they are beautiful and important, no matter what!

Flag Reply +2 rate up
1 reply
kacalder Hey GRAM DAWG March 29 2014 at 12:46 PM

Actually, we must assure our daughters (and our fellow humans in general) that we all have the capacity to discover what beauty is -- which may disagree sharply with our current self-indulgent concepts of what it is. We do NOT need any more self-subverting assurances that we're just wonderful the way we are! (How well I remember that grotesque and abortive "self-esteem" movement!) That is a prescription for degeneration and decadence, which is without question what's happening in our culture today.

Yes, resist societal pressures . . . but not because they are critical of what I am, but rather because they point me in a false direction. It's not pressure per se that's bad, it's the direction it points you in! Where would this woman be if these others had not applied concerted pressure to change directions?

Flag Reply 0 rate up
hola robbie March 29 2014 at 10:31 AM

The woman who introduced the story looks aneroxic too.

Flag Reply +5 rate up
Gregory March 29 2014 at 8:11 PM

Great! She got another chance. Now she needs to address the psyche issues that put her into that frame of mind to exercise herself to death. If not, relapse and morte.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
1 reply
ladygolfer Gregory March 29 2014 at 11:04 PM

Uh, she may have done that during the 11 months she was in treatment. As with alcoholism, she'll always have to be mindful of her demons.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
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