Teen Soccer Star Loses Leg When Friend Hits Her With Car
Filed under: In The News
A 17-year-old soccer star who lost her leg in a freak car accident says she doesn't harbor any ill will toward the friend who hit her, and her fight to heal is inspiring her family, friends and even some celebrity athletes.
According to the WESH-TV, Breanna McMahon of Orlando, Fla. was participating in a car wash fundraiser for her high school soccer team in October when a friend lost control of her car and hit the girl. She was pinned against a wall and ultimately lost her left leg above the knee after surgeons said saving her life meant amputating her limb.
The Freedom High School student had been offered an athletic scholarship to play soccer at a college in North Carolina just prior to her accident.
McMahon tells the Today Show that she doesn't blame her friend for the accident. "Her brakes just slipped," she tells Jenna Bush. "It was an accident. It just happened. It wasn't her fault and she is a great person. I couldn't be mad at her for even a second."
That strength of character and loving heart inspires Breanna's parents to be strong as their daughter's body begins to heal from the traumatic injuries she suffered. There was a time after the accident when the girl was unable to breathe on her own, according to WESH-TV.
"I remember thinking, 'She just hit Bree,'" Katheleen McMahon tells Today, describing the moment when her daughter was struck by the car. She adds that while at the hospital, a surgeon came into the waiting room and told Breanna's parents: "We're losing her."
After amputating McMahon's leg just above the knee, her condition stabilized. She recently went home from the hospital and was able to attend her high school's homecoming dance. Her fight to heal caught the attention -- and the hearts -- of star athletes Mia Hamm and Ryan Longwell, both of whom communicate with the teen on a regular basis.
Longwell, the kicker for the Minnesota Vikings football team, lives in Orlando during the offseason. He chats with McMahon regularly about her progress. Soccer standout Hamm is McMahon's idol. She called the teen and gave her a signed soccer ball, telling her that she is inspired by her attitude. "I was in shock" when Hamm called, McMahon tells Today. "I was like, 'oh my gosh! I am on the phone with Mia Hamm!"
McMahon has a long journey ahead of her, says her dad, David, but she also has a fighting spirit. "She's cried, but she's never not looked at what she could do to go forward," he tells Today. In fact, McMahon was recently able to stand with a walker, the show reports.
And that soccer scholarship? According to the Today Show, the offer still stands.
Related: Get a New Favorite Athlete, Amputation/Limb Deficiency
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.