Lochside Garage

Graduation joy for CAFRE student after road crash

THE road to recovery from a brain injury has been one with many twists and turns for Enniskillen student Aoibheann Magee. 
In March 2016, just weeks away from completing the final stages of a degree at CAFRE Enniskillen, Aoibheann was involved in a life changing road traffic accident while on placement in Kildare. “I was due to graduate five or six weeks later,” she explained. 
Aoibheann can’t recall much from the time of the accident but mum, Sinead explained that following the crash her daughter was in a coma and spent over a month in intensive care, initially in Beaumont Hospital, Dublin and then the Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast. 
After having her peg feeding tube removed Aoibheann then transferred to the Regional Acquired Brain Injury Unit (RABIU) at Musgrave Park Hospital Belfast, where she spent a further three months. 
Aoibheann’s dad Paul said, “She had to learn everything, starting from breathing, it was that bad. She learned to walk again and she really had to work hard with through physiotherapy and occupational therapy.”
From learning to walk again to taking hold of her mum’s bike and getting back on a horse, Aoibheann has been on a remarkable road to recovery. 
As part of her rehabilitation she had a lot of targets mapped out which she worked towards, starting with walking to the post box at the end of the street. Three years later the remarkable young woman has smashed every target set for her, with just one left to tick off the list, that is graduating with a degree in Equine Management in Enniskillen in a few weeks time.
“I have just one target left to smash, and that is graduation. Then I will need a new set of goals. This final hurdle, I wouldn’t have been able to get over without my parents and I’m thankful to them for that.”
Her siblings have also been there helping her and supporting her on her journey, “They are great, I annoy them and they annoy me, that’s the way it goes,” she joked. 
“There’s been plenty of ups and downs. I’m just coming out of a bad bit and it’s good to be back here [CAFRE]. I am looking forward to my graduation now that I have been back again.”
Paul paid tribute to the staff at CAFRE, “The college here have been fabulous in supporting us throughout. 
“Aoibheann has been left with short term memory problems so for her to sit final exams was a non starter, so staff went back and worked with the university to reconfigure.”
Smashing the final target, Aoibheann will graduate surrounded by family, friends and staff from CAFRE later this month.

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