A West Yorkshire woman left fighting for her life after a car crash three years ago has spoken of the life-changing impact of her accident - and her determination to make a full recovery.
A West Yorkshire woman left fighting for her life after a car crash three years ago has spoken of the life-changing impact of her accident – and her determination to make a full recovery.
Angela Menzies, of Bradford, broke almost every bone in her body in a head-on collision with a van which had veered onto her side of the road on a summer morning in 2016.
She was left in an induced coma for a month, with her family left praying for her survival.
Quite amazingly, survive she did, but when she awoke it was only to face another major battle. This time to overcome the extensive, life-changing injuries she’d suffered.
However, this year, Angela, 59, has started to see real progress thanks to continued physical, psychological and occupational therapy, and a dedicated support team of health professionals behind her.
She has been building up the distance she can walk unaided to between 16 and 20 meters and has even returned to driving independently again.
Now she wants her story to provide inspiration and hope to others whose lives are changed forever in a matter of seconds by serious accidents on the roads.
“There are times when you find yourself in a situation like I did where you feel down and you don’t think you’ll ever feel positive again,” she said.
“But you have to stay positive and you have to keep fighting and never give up.‘’
Angela is sharing her story to mark Road Safety Week, which is coordinated annually by the road safety charity Brake, which works to prevent road death and injury and support road accident victims.
“All I know is that I’d set off for work and it was dark, as it was 4am in the morning. The next thing I knew was when I came out of the coma,” she said.
Legal claim has ensured a dedicated package of support
Angela instructed specialist catastrophic injury solicitor Samuel McFadyen, who has ensured she has benefitted from continued support through a team of dedicated health professionals.
Psychological support initially focused on coping strategies to manage Angela’s low moods, night terrors and anxiety levels, whilst occupational therapy aimed to help her become more independent and less reliant on family supervision.
These changes helped her progress and reach significant milestones, such as cooking Christmas dinner for her family in 2017, but life in their semi-detached home was still a struggle.
Then, as part of her ongoing legal claim, a substantial interim payment was agreed with insurers, enabling Angela and her husband to purchase a bungalow, which they moved into in April of this year.
“The move has transformed my life,” she said.
“When Sam contacted me about the interim damages payment, which we were then able to use to buy a bungalow, I was blown away.
“I can now walk through every room now using the walls for support and then use the worktops in the kitchen to lean on. I’m also able to shower on my own and feel fully clean. The indignity of my situation before was just awful’’
“I can also do other small things alone, like getting up to go to the toilet in the night. It may sound small, but it has been years since I could do that.
It has transformed how I live. “
‘I’ll keep on fighting because so many people are fighting for me’
Having undergone 15 operations so far, Angela still faces yet more surgery, but 2019 has been a year of great progress.
“Angela is an inspirational person and from the very beginning she has been determined to do her all to make the best possible recovery,” says Samuel McFadyen.
“She still has some major hurdles ahead but there is nobody more determined to overcome them than Angela herself, and we will certainly be by her side as she continues on her journey to recovery.”
Image credit: Telegraph and Argus