Teen defies odds after serious crash to still graduate on time

Posted at 6:13 PM, May 22, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-22 22:51:42-04

Graduation is just two days away for a student who spent most of her senior year in the hospital.

Josephine Siegel’s life changed in a split second at the intersection of 51st Avenue and Baseline Road when a red light runner slammed into her car in November of 2016.

"I broke half of my face, my sternum. I displaced some discs in my neck. I broke 9 out of 12 of my ribs. I had a collapsed lung, and the major one was I had multiple breaks in my back,” Josephine Siegel said.

Josephine’s mother was in the car with her that day. She still has a hard time talking about it.

"He told me the chances of her walking again—“ Amy  Siegel, Josephine’s mother, couldn’t finish the sentence without crying.

Josephine is now a paraplegic, but she has faith that will change one day.

"I strongly believe that I'm going to walk again. The doctors told me that I have like one in one trillion chances of walking again,” Josephine said.

Four months in a hospital bed will give you time to think. Josephine had a realization.

"The way I act and the way my attitude is, is going to determine what my outcome is,” Josephine said.

Despite every obstacle, Josephine put in the work to be able to graduate on time with her class.

She plans to attend ASU in the fall, and would like to become a social worker.

"She's just so super strong. She inspires me every day,” Amy said.

In her yearbook, Josephine’s senior quote is missing because the day they asked for them, she was in the hospital.

Here’s what she would’ve written:

"It may be hard, but not impossible," Josephine said.

Amy and Josephine said their church, Grace Walk Community Church, supported them through the long hospital stay, with countless people by their side.

Since the crash, Amy has been away from work caring for Josephine and her two siblings. If you would like to help the family, they have a donation page you can visit HERE.