UNC senior remains in medically induced coma following accident

Three weeks and a day -- that's how long a senior at UNC has been in a coma, fighting for her life instead of wrapping up her last semester.
Three weeks and a day. That's how long a senior at UNC has been in a coma, fighting for her life instead of wrapping up her last semester.

Twenty-one year old Jacquelyn Segovia was in a car crash and is now at Duke University Hospital in an induced coma with her family at her side.

"She is an awesome, happy woman. She is so giving, gives so much to others," said Jenny Segovia, who can't help but light up when you ask her to describe her little sister, Jacquelyn.

Jacquelyn, who her sisters call Jackie, is a senior at UNC majoring in psychology. Her big sister Jenny describes her as beautiful young woman with a giving nature. She said Jacqueline even shaved her head to raise money for cancer research for the St. Baldrick's Foundation.

Jenny says Jacquelyn lights up a room. However, that light went dark in the early morning hours of Aug. 5 on U.S. Highway 15/501 just south of Morreene Road in Durham. Durham police say she somehow lost control of her car.

"It was a foggy night. She was driving home by herself but the car flipped, hit a sign post," said Segovia.

Segovia described how hard it was seeing her sister for the first time after the accident. Jacquelyn had suffered a traumatic brain injury and was put in a medically induced coma.

"We were shocked and overwhelmed by seeing Jackie in that condition," said Segovia. "My dad's taking it really hard. It's finally hitting him like I can't see my daughter like this. It's really hard on my parents."

In the three weeks since the accident Jacquelyn has come a long way.

"The doctors, the nurses are even surprised at how far along that she's come," said Segovia. "She's starting to move her arms, open her eyes more for longer periods of time. Right now, we're just waiting for her to wake up."

But for Segovia, who is a nurse, the reality of what her sister faces after she wakes up, the unknown, is what weighs on her right now and getting her sister back to the woman she was before that early morning crash on Aug. 5.

"I can't be her nurse," said Segovia. "I have to be her sister when I'm there for her. I leave it all up to God to give me strength and give our family strength."

Jacquelyn has her family's faith and strength to get her through this but she also faces more than a year of medical care and rehabilitation. There is a fund set up to help the family with medical costs. To donate, click here.

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