“Lisa took the brunt of the impact while trying her best to shield her husband and daughter.”
A California girl’s 4th birthday ended in unimaginable tragedy when a sledding accident left her in a coma and her mom dead.
Dahveed Kolodny-Nagy and his wife Lisa Mao brought their only daughter Nova to Mount Baldy on February 4 to spend the day celebrating in the snow.
But towards the end of their visit, all three were aboard a sled that lost control and smashed head first into a giant boulder.
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“Lisa took the brunt of the impact while trying her best to shield her husband and daughter,” a family member wrote in a GoFundMe. “Tragically, she lost her life shortly after the impact.”
Nova meanwhile was knocked unconscious, suffering severe damage to her skull, brain, eyes, collar and liver, as well as a broken arm.
“Dahveed did everything humanly possible to both resuscitate his beloved wife and care for his wounded daughter,” the family member wrote. “Rescuers heard his calls and airlifted the two loves of his life to the hospital.”
As the fundraiser explains, Lisa did not have any life insurance at the time of her death, leaving the bereaved father facing the cost of burying his wife as well as the mounting cost of caring for his daughter.
“There is too much swelling in Nova’s brain right now for the doctors to know how much damage was done to her beautiful mind,” the initial post reported.
Frequent updates on the painful to read fundraiser have since tracked the little girl’s slow but hopeful progress, from her undergoing a craniectomy to remove a portion of her skull to relive the swelling on February 9, to her opening one eye while still comatose on February 16, to her finally leaving ICU on February 23.
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Three months after the accident, her mom has still not been buried.
“Lisa is in good hands and is being preserved until Dahveed can focus on giving his beautiful wife the funeral she deserves,” the fundraiser explains in one tragic update.
Dahveed explains in another that he was attempting to have his daughter moved to a long-term children’s rehabilitation center where she would spend 18 months re-learning “skills like talking and walking” — but he did not have the proper insurance.
“Please understand that she is now fully awake but with her brain so badly damaged she is not capable of comprehension, including any motor skills,” he wrote, indicating the the child has no idea her mother has perished.
“I have not had a chance yet to catch my breath but out of necessity I am spending time away from my daughter to make preparations for my wife,” he wrote.
In another subsequent update, having finally got her into the rehab center, he describes the pain of not being allowed to see his child at all because of strict Covid rules, to the point where security was called to escort him out.
As Nova’s recovery continues, so do preparations for her mother’s funeral, which is scheduled for June 25.
To date, the GoFundMe has raised more than $82,000.
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