NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A 12-year-old boy nearly died in a ski accident, but nine months later, he and his family are celebrating a Christmas they didn’t think they would have.

Twelve-year-old Jack Guthrie is full of life, but in March, he was just holding on to it, CBS2’s Ali Bauman reported.

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“I slipped on a patch of black ice and I hit a tree, at least that’s what I’m told,” he said.

After a ski accident put him in a coma with a traumatic brain injury, a fractured skull and with blood seeping into his lungs, doctors didn’t know if the boy could be saved.

“It was clear that they weren’t sure they could save him, so they were just trying their best to do anything,” Jack’s mother, Sari, said.

For weeks, Jack’s parents stood worried at his bedside. To pass the time, his father, Kevin, played guitar.

“I would probably play three hours a day or more, you know just playing and having music in the background,” Kevin said.

A month later, Jack woke up.

Not long after that, against all the odds, he stood up. He was still in the hospital and the hours of physical and cognitive therapy were long, so he and his dad kept playing.

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“It was like a way to escape from living in the hospital 24/7,” Jack said.

After three months in the hospital, Jack was released in June. He said he was greeted by an apartment filled with family and friends.

But even though he was back, he still had a long road to recovery.

“There was sort of a slow return to normalcy that happens over a course of time, and it’s marking those successes that gives you a sense of positivity,” Sari said.

Positivity radiates naturally from the 12-year-old.

“I just did what I usually do, and I lived my life normally, and I guess a positive attitude made me better fast,” he said.

His attitude didn’t just make him better, it continues to make everyone around him a little better too.

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The family will be in Vermont for the holidays, but Jack still faces more rehab before he can ski again.