Schoolies warn: Drunk driver’s two-week coma, long road to recovery

But then an argument broke out and Denzel left for home, without the pleas of friends and his sister’s attempt to take his car keys. a seat belt. In the year since that terrible night, the 22-year-old has been in a coma for two weeks and hospitalized for four months, three of which in a specialized facility for people with severe brain injuries. swallow, talk, get dressed and walk again. And each day of that long, painful recovery, Denzel waited for the moment when he would be healthy enough to tell his story as a warning to others. their minds,” he said this week as the students of Queensland got ready to celebrate the Schoolies festival. “Many young people think they are invincible when they get their driver’s license.” months in hospital and a two-year recovery .” Police will plead today with: young motorists to act responsibly during the New Year’s Eve celebrations, with Queensland’s horror tolls expected to rise to 300 by 2021. A resident of a nearby property ran outside after hearing of the crash and found Denzel with his legs trapped on the driver’s side and the rest of his body crushed in the footwell of the passenger seat, emergency services had to cut him out of the car Denzel’s mother, Katy Girling-King, an emergency room nurse, said they didn’t know if he would survive when they ran to the hospital that night to be with him. door and they are working on him. Is he dead? is he alive?” she said. “They can’t give you information and you can’t take them away from that job — that means they’re not helping your son.” weeks in a coma with five brain haemorrhages, a collapsed lung and a broken vertebra. Doctors thought he would never be able to walk or talk again. This week he reached another milestone when he was able to run 10 meters. “I’m not where I want to be, but I’m close,” Denzel said. .“I can’t work. I can’t drive. “The only thing I learned during this recovery is that if you want to get through it, you have to have a good mindset and good support.” I think I realize how different my life would be if I hadn’t made that choice to drive I guess I’m an idiot to do that. “Just take a cab, call your mom, call your dad, call someone.” Anyone who really cares about you will pick you up instead of visiting you near death in the hospital.” Ms. Girling-King said she was incredibly proud of her son, who never shyed away from admitting his mistake. Working so hard on his recovery, it’s amazing,” she said. “And this goal of his was good from the start – he wanted to get the message out: no drink-driving. “And that was from the moment we got him home, back on March 10, he said, I’ve got to get it there.” So we’ve worked all year and for him to achieve this goal and get where he now is … pride is an understatement, pride just won’t make it.”

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