EUDORA, Kan. -- It's been a week since 17-year-old Sadie Walker was seriously hurt while trying to rescue a turtle out of a rural road in Eudora.
"She's been through a lot in a week, but the leaps and bounds she's made have surprised us," says Sadie's big sister, Megan Walker.
Megan calls her sister a "miracle" because when paramedics rushed Sadie to Overland Park Regional Medical Center last Thursday, she had life-threatening injuries to her legs and pelvis. Doctors feared Sadie wouldn't make it, but amazingly her family says the Lawrence High School senior has beaten the odds.
"She's scratched up really good. None of it initially looked good. Whether you were looking at her or being able to look at her charts, it just didn't look good," Megan said. "But one week later she's talking, clapping her hands when we enter her hospital room, and we're all just so happy."
Sadie was traveling on E. 1900 Road in Douglas County with her mom when they stopped after Sadie spotted a turtle. She hopped out of the passenger seat to help the turtle get across the street when she was hit by an oncoming car.
Sadie, who relatives say is a "true fighter" and doctors say has a "strong will to live," is now out of intensive care, upgraded to fair and bouncing back one day at a time. The longtime animal lover started therapy on Friday. At this point, it's still too early to say when she'll leave the hospital, but relatives are certain "she will."
"I was glad to have her talking to us again. It's a miracle that she's here," says Sadie's sister, Heidi Gunderson with tears in her eyes.
"She's positive. She's happy. Everybody's here, and we want the best for her. We just want our Sadie back," says the girl's sister, Cassie Walker.
The 36-year-old driver whose car hit Sadie was arrested for driving with a suspended license and failure to provide proof of insurance.