Mother Shares How Norman Bus Crash Affected Her Family

Wednesday, December 12th 2018, 10:25 pm
By: News 9

The mother of a Norman student is sharing their family's struggles after a bus accident left her daughter with a traumatic brain injury.

Her daughter was one of several students injured in September when their school bus hydroplaned and rolled several times.

One month after Leslie Draper's husband was injured on the job leaving his family with no medical insurance, Leslie got a call from her daughter. She was on a field trip, and was badly hurt.

“All I heard was children screaming, and my child screaming. The only words she could get out was we had a wreck,” said Draper.

Six hours away, she jumped in her car and headed to Texas unsure of her daughter, Piper's condition.

“She just kept saying I’m covered in blood, I’m covered in blood,” said Draper.  

While doctors treated Piper for a broken shoulder and other injuries, it wasn't until she was home that doctors diagnosed her with a traumatic brain injury.

“She’s not been to school but three days since the wreck happened. She has headaches every day, she’s dizzy, she gets very confused, she’s lost a lot of friendships,” said Draper.

While her daughter's physical injuries have started to heal her emotional injuries are deeply rooted.

“She dreams school buses are chasing her, she dreams that she’s flipping or spinning,” said Draper.  

So traumatized, Draper says a simple car ride sends her daughter into a paralyzing panic.

Since the accident most of her time is spent  between her job and shuttling her daughter and husband to their doctor appointments. With her husband unable to work, Draper says she setup a GoFundMe in hopes of trying to stay afloat.

“I was just so trying to help him and then Piper was injured and now I would sell a kidney on the black market to get them better,” said Draper.

With only a million dollars in district insurance to cover everyone's medical expenses--Draper says she has to believe this happened for a bigger reason. Possibly to bring attention to a system that she says is grossly under insured.

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