A WOMAN who survived a head-on car crash has carried out months of fundraising for the air medics who helped her.
Sophie Kelly, 22, from Frizington, near Whitehaven, was involved in a serious three-car collision at the west end Threlkeld junction on the A66 on December 27, 2011.
Sophie was travelling in a car with her father, Kenneth Kelly, and her then-partner, Scott Musgrave, when another vehicle pulled out of the junction in front of them, causing Kenneth to swerve onto the opposite side of the road and hit an oncoming car.
The Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) was in attendance with two of its helicopters, the Pride of Cumbria and the Guardian of the North, who Sophie has since raised £800 for.
Scott, 18 at the time, was airlifted to Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary with abdominal injuries. Sophie and her father were taken by road ambulance to Cumberland infirmary, Carlisle and West Cumberland Hospital, Whitehaven, respectively.
Sophie said: “I tore my liver and spleen. Scott tore his spleen and had a hole in his bowel and my dad fractured his right hip, broke his right ankle, sprained his left ankle and damaged a tendon.
“Without the charity, I don’t believe we would have survived, so I thank them with every inch of me for saving our lives.”
Sophie’s determination to fundraise for GNAAS, which is a charity reliant on donations to survive, came after she and Scott went on to make recoveries. Kenneth, whose recovery was far slower, sadly passed away on November 12 last year.
As part of her fundraising drive, Sophie completed the Great North Swim in Windermere, took on a 10K in Manchester, gave up alcohol for a month and held bake sales.
She plans to raise more money in Kenneth’s memory in 2016.
She said: “In a speech at my dad’s funeral, I spoke about how he reminded me of Santa because he was never selfish. He was a loved family man with a funny character.”
Mandy Drake, head of fundraising at GNAAS, said: “We want to say a huge thank you to Sophie for her committed fundraising efforts over the course of many months. It is hugely appreciated and will make a difference to the lives of our future patients.”