MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Delia Tafur has taken a giant step in her recovery one year after losing both legs in a tragic accident.
Last year, on October 23, Tafur was one of six people waiting at a bus stop in Miami Gardens when a driver lost control, crashing into them. Mary Smith, 83, died on the scene and two others were critically injured.
As a result of the accident, Tafur lost both legs. Her friend, Wendy Vazquez, 45, shattered her right leg in three places—leaving her unable to walk.
“We don’t remember anything, not even the car coming to us and hitting us,” Vazquez said during a news conference at Jackson Memorial Hospital.
“These are two very strong women,” said Dr. Urmen Desai, a plastic surgeon who treated both women. “To have something like this happen to you and to see it also happen to your best friend—takes a special type of person to be able to face something like that.”
Vazquez and Tafur have undergone multiple surgeries at Jackson. Both continue outpatient physical therapy at Jackson Rehabilitation Hospital, where Tafur was recently fitted with “stubbies,” temporary prosthetic legs to help her learn to get around.
“She has a tremendous can-do attitude. Nothing can stop her. She always has a smile on her face whenever I see her,” said Dr. John Bowker, an orthopedic surgeon at Jackson. He compared Tafur’s will to survive to wounded service members who lose limbs during military service.
Tafur would someday like to have computerized prosthetic legs and a motorized wheelchair. While she waits, the bond between her and Vazquez grows stronger each day.
“The feelings of two people are not based on a leg or an arm,” said Vazquez. “Even though we have gone through so much in life our bond has gotten stronger.”
If the public would like to help Vazquez and Tafur with their medical expenses, they can send donations to: Wells Fargo, Account number: 1010304482928 for Delia Tafur. To donate to Wendy Vazquez, the Chase Bank Account number is 205279550.