Raleigh hit-and-run victim maintains positive outlook despite obstacles


Ana Kessel was injured so badly in a hit-and-run accident that her leg had to be amputated.

The recent college graduate from Florida had just moved to Raleigh for her first job.

So far, more than $48,000 has been raised for her recovery.

"When I woke up in the hospital, that's when my memory first came. [I] began hearing nurses saying 'I'm sorry we couldn't save your leg' and I just keep hearing these voices repeat the same thing over and over," said Kessel.

It's been about a week and a half since Kessel was hurt. She's at the beginning of a very long recovery process, but yet, she shows incredibly strength and acceptance of the situation.

"This accident, I couldn't have done anything to avoid it," said Kessel. "It wasn't my fault."

She's partly crediting her positive outlook to an online fundraiser website that was set up when she was in the ICU to pay for medical bills. Thousands of dollars have been raised.

Click here to visit Ana's fundraising website.

"People who didn't even know me were just sending money and prayer and sending me really good vibes and I think that really help," said Kessel.

Kessel was riding a scooter on Rock Quarry Road on Nov. 11 and attempting to make a left turn when she was hit by a car. Police say 23-year-old Michael Jones crashed into her and kept going. He was charged with felony hit and run and driving without a valid license.

"It's obvious that both my life and his life will never be the same and I just feel like anger towards him is just a waste of energy," said Kessel.

Kessel now just wants to puts her energy into learning how to live as an amputee. She also wants to return to her career.

She moved to North Carolina a few months ago from Florida to work as a graphic artist. The recent college graduate says, even if she can't walk right away, she'll be able work.

"What else would I do with myself," joked Kessel. "Yeah, I found my passion in life and I'm sticking with it for sure."

Kessel will be leaving WakeMed on Monday.

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