Teen paralyzed in gymnastics accident learning how to drive

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Feb. 16, 2016) – An Indianapolis high school senior is defying odds while learning how to walk again.

Three years ago, 18-year-old Macy Huff was paralyzed during a gymnastics accident while preparing for cheerleading try outs. Since her accident, she has been going to therapy multiple times a week working to re-gain her strength. She’s hoping to walk across the stage during her high school graduation in June.

Huff is inspiring those around her by not giving up, even after the challenges she faces as a C5-6 quadriplegic.

“I knew my mind was going to have to be moving forward and not just looking back on the past and dream what I had and dreaming of the future,” she said.

Not only is Huff hoping to learn to walk again, she’s also working to do something many of us take for granted. She’s learning how to drive a car.

The car she needs to drive isn’t like any ordinary van. Huff is learning to drive in a van specifically designed for her. Every detail matters including how close the her wheelchair is to the steering wheel, how high up the seat is, and making sure her chair is locked in and secure before taking off.

“I have to push for gas and pull for brake and keep this hand on the wheel at all time and it’s this way and this and this,” Huff said, describing the difficulty of remembering each step.

Easter Seals Crossroads is helping Huff out along the way. Instructors bring a van with Huff’s settings and little by little, teach her the steps to move forward, turn, and even how to park.

In order for Huff to get her license, she must complete so many practice driving hours. Those hours must be done in a handicapped accessible van. One that’s designed specifically for her needs can cost more than $50,000. She’s hoping to raise enough money to get a van so she can eventually get her drivers license.

To find out more about Huff and how you can help, click here.

To find out more about Easter Seals Crossroads, click here.

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