As a teenager Kelly loved the outdoors and could often be found riding horses, playing soccer or working on the family farm. But in July 2014 a car accident left her paralysed from the waist down and confined to a wheelchair, with doctors saying she would never be able to walk again. Now, following months of epidural stimulation treatment and strenuous rehab, she has proved the doctors wrong by becoming one of the first paraplegics in the world to take steps under her own power.
“Being a participant in this study truly changed my life, as it has provided me with a hope that I didn’t think was possible after my car accident. The first day I took steps on my own was an emotional milestone in my recovery that I’ll never forget, as one minute I was walking with the trainer’s assistance and, while they stopped, I continued walking on my own. It’s amazing what the human body can accomplish with help from research and technology,” she said. “They were helping me as usual and then they stopped and I took maybe three or four steps in sequence. I just stopped and my lips started quivering, my face got hot and my eyes got teary, and I was like, ‘Oh my God! I just took steps’.”