She Chose to Live

  • Gigi and Bill Day have fought the inspiring battle together, every stepof the way.

    Gigi and Bill Day have fought the inspiring battle together, every stepof the way.

One Year after Terrible Crash, Gigi Day Is Walking Again…and Eager to Dance.

Thanksgiving-eve marked the one-year anniversary of the terrible crash on Frazier Mountain Park Road that crushed Gigi Day’s legs, pelvis and face, leaving her with internal bleeding so severe that doctors didn’t expect her to survive the night. Friends held a vigil at Kern Medical Center.

They pleaded with emergency room doctors not to believe the note on her chart that read “Age: 80.” Actuarial tables told them she had little chance. Her friends told doctors they were about to see a miracle.

“Give her a chance,” we begged at midnight as they hesitated to give still more transfusions. “She’s a fighter. She will surprise you.”

Gigi’s husband of 19 years, Bill Day, drove from Arkansas, bringing with him a tiny “Lojo” travel trailer in which he would live—in the hospital parking lot—for the next four months so that he could stay by her side at the hospital night and day. Today, with Bill’s help, she hopes someday to be able to dance again—although physical therapists tell her she should be considering assisted living.

“I still walk like a pregnant penguin,” Gigi said on December 2, 2009. “I don’t hop around like I used to and I do get very tired.” But anyone who knows Gigi has seen that special quality of spirit that causes her to challenge barriers and defeat limitations. She credits Frazier Mountain with her resilience.

“No one expected me to live, let alone to be able to walk again. I feel that I’m surviving and progressing because of the wonderful rapport I have with this community. I cry when I meet people who say I have inspired them,” she said.

—By Patric Hedlund

This is part of the December 04, 2009 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.

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