A 368-pound woman and her 338-pound son shed a combined 253 pounds under a judge's threat to place the teenager in a foster home unless he lost weight and stopped skipping school.

"It's like a miracle, because I was near death," said Nancy Gray, 48, who along with her 16-year-old son, Joseph, enrolled in a diet program in upstate New York and in Fort Walton Beach, Fla."I was so close to 400 pounds it was ridiculous, and by staying in bed I thought nobody would notice it," said Nancy Gray, who lost 102 pounds.

Joseph Gray, who lost 151 pounds, said he frequently skipped school to take care of his mother and because he was embarrassed about his weight.

After a judge said Gray could be sent to a foster home, his mother enlisted the care of diet expert Dick Gregory of Plymouth and in June, the two joined 11 others under Gregory's care.