Jonah's stepdad, Sammy Barrera, said, "He fought as much as he can." Barrera was by his stepson's side, when he passed away. "I don't even know what to say; I'm so lost for words," Barrera added. "Of course just thinking about him, no longer going to be with us anymore, you know?"
Jonah was injured while riding an inner tube on Lake Kaweah. A metal loop snapped off the tube and got lodged in his head. The damage was severe. Two doctors declared the boy brain dead, and the hospital was preparing to take him off life support -- all while the family was fighting for more time.
Barrera said, "Their procedure or whatever they had to do after the tests they went through, that were signs that he was no longer with us."
In the end, doctors didn't get a chance to unplug the life support machines. They were still connected, and Barrera says his stepson passed away on his own. Both of Jonah's parents were in the room when it happened, and both were too devastated to speak on camera.
"He is their only child, you know what I mean? They're really heartbroken," Barrera said.
Jonah was just 12 years old. He was a kid from Corcoran who loved being with family, outdoors, which is where he was the last time he was awake.
Stepdad says doctors did not take Jonah Panduro off life support, the machines just weren't able to keep him alive. pic.twitter.com/fwAsCcVwUr— Joe Ybarra (@JoeYbarraTV) July 6, 2015