Houston area principal spends 39 days in hospital after testing positive for COVID-19

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A high school principal has been in the hospital for 39 days recovering from COVID-19.

After spending weeks intubated, Phil Eaton is now at TIRR Memorial Hermann in The Woodlands learning to walk again.

"I can't walk like I could before. My body is still waking up," Eaton said.

He's been in the hospital since March and remembers the day he arrived.

"I went into an interior room in the ER, and that's all I can remember at this point," Eaton said. "I woke up three weeks later and realized I had zero idea that was going on."

Eaton is the principal at Lake Creek High School. He's been an educator and coach for 41 years.

Eaton was diagnosed with pneumonia which progressed fast. He spent 20 days on a ventilator.

He said he was told on days eight through 16, he was doing very bad. Eaton credits the doctors for saving his life and never giving up on him.

"Prayers are number one, but you still got to do the work," Eaton said.

He said he woke up in the hospital once, the doctors asked him to name the president, and he couldn't.

"When you're out three weeks, a lot of things happen to your body. Even mentally, there's some stuff that happens," he said.

Eaton lost 35 pounds, but he's regaining his strength now. He credits his rehab at TIRR Memorial Hermann.

"My legs are just weaker. My arms are weaker. So, we're doing some really good work to get all that back," said Eaton.

He's set to be released from the hospital on May 5th.

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