Crash teenager unlikely to recover

By Liz HearnshawTHE devastated family of a 16-year-old girl who was seriously injured in a horrific road accident have spoken of their heartbreak after doctors told them the teenager was unlikely to recover.

By Liz Hearnshaw

THE devastated family of a 16-year-old girl who was seriously injured in a horrific road accident have spoken of their heartbreak after doctors told them the teenager was unlikely to recover.

Deborah Parkes, who was thrown through a brick wall after she was involved in a collision with a van last month, has been moved from intensive care to a general ward at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge, but will suffer severe Her grandfather, Peter Parkes, spoke last night of the family's anguish since the accident, which happened in Red Lodge, and said Christmas would “mean nothing” without her home and well.

“Deborah has been put into a general ward, and they have told us they can't do anything for her. We have been told she is going to be severely brain-damaged and may not survive. It is so sad,” he said.


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“It has knocked the living daylights out of us - Christmas has no meaning at all for us this year.”

Deborah suffered multiple injuries when she collided with the van as she walked to work at the Red Lodge Café.

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The former Newmarket Upper School pupil was left with serious head injuries, a fractured pelvis, a broken thigh bone and smashed ankle following the accident on November 17.

She recovered enough to squeeze her father Simon's hand at the end of last month, but contracted hospital superbug MRSA and infections about two weeks later.

Her family have been keeping a vigil beside her bed at the Cambridge hospital, where she was in a stable condition last night - but they have been hit with sadness after discovering poignant reminders of her plans for Christmas.

“When we look under her bed, she has all the presents she's brought for us and all the cards she has written to people,” added Mr Parkes.

“We will put them in the post because while she is alive she has a right to send them, but it is so heartbreaking.

“She is off the life-support machine and breathing on her own, but to hope she will come through the other side is grabbing at straws.

“She didn't deserve this. She is such a lovely girl. But the staff at the hospital have been brilliant and you cannot fault them.”

Deborah's accident stunned the close-knit community of Red Lodge, with truckers who use the café where the teenager worked particularly affected.

A group hope to hold a charity truck pull on December 27 to help raise money to care for the 16-year-old should she recover enough to leave hospital.

Staff at the café have also put together a scrapbook of cuttings and goodwill messages for Deborah's parents, Wendy and Simon.

liz.hearnshaw@eadt.co.uk

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