A brave teenager who had to learn how to walk, talk and eat again following a car crash which almost killed her has defied medics to pursue a BALLET career.
Megan Sargeant, 17, suffered life-changing injuries after the horror smash while on holiday in Florida, USA, on July 6 last year.
She was put in a coma for five weeks and her family was told she might never regain consciousness.
But after a gruelling 18 month recovery Megan is incredibly back on her feet and performing ballet once again.
And on Saturday (1/10) the determined college student took part in her first public recital since suffering a severe brain injury and fractured spine, pelvis and leg.
Today (Mon) Megan, of Bagnall, Staffs., said: “It has been a long journey.
“I did not think I would ever be able to dance again but I can – I just do it in my own way.
“Hopefully one day I will be able to walk without a splint.
“I do not remember anything about the crash. I do not remember anything of America.
“I was flown back on a life support machine. I had post traumatic amnesia so have very little recollection of the six months after the accident.
“I’m walking a parallel path to the life I should have had but am grateful for what I have and what I can do.
“I don’t know what I’m going to do in the future. For now it’s just about getting better.”
Megan had been in America with her family to celebrate finishing her GCSEs when she was involved in the head-on crash.
The teenager was rushed to a separate hospital to her mum and dad who had no idea if she was alive.
Mum Julie Sargeant, 50, said: “Megan took the brunt of the impact, she was completely unresponsive.
“I was being treated for minor injuries at a different hospital and didn’t know if she was alive or dead.
“I got discharged and took a taxi to her hospital. She had bruising all over her face. She didn’t look like Megan.
“We were told to expect the worst. We were told she could remain in a vegetative state.
“The insurance company sorted out an air ambulance.
“We flew to Manchester after 10 days and she was taken to Royal Stoke Hospital where she continued to be in intensive care for three weeks.”
Although Megan eventually regained consciousness back in England she was unable to do anything herself.
Mum-of-two Julie added: “She was conscious at this time but she was just thrashing round the bed.
“There was nothing in her eyes. That wasn’t Megan at all.
“One day a consultant took us into a room and told us to accept Megan had gone.
“For two months we had nothing back from her.
“But then an occupational therapist brought in a whiteboard and wrote her first name on it and he then asked Megan to write her surname and she did.
“My chin hit the floor and from then on I knew there was hope.”
After four months at Royal Stoke, Megan was transferred to an intensive specialist in Surrey where she slowly learned to complete simple tasks on her own.
Amazingly, she has also started a business studies course at City of Stoke-on-Trent Sixth Form College with the help of a classroom assistant.
Julie, a Care Quality Commission inspector, said: “She has problems with short-term memory and her thought process isn’t as fast as it used to be.
“She also has to walk with a splint but we’ve got our Megan back.
“There’s a long journey ahead and there will be a lot of challenges but we were told that from day one.
“She’s really determined and has exceeded the expectations of the specialists.
“It is amazing to see her perform ballet again, she always wanted to be a ballerina and who knows, she could still pursue that dream.
“I wouldn’t put it past her. She’s come this far. There’s just no stopping her. She’s a real fighter.”
With help from her physio Jodie Hogan and dance teacher Maria Oakes, Megan performed in the ballet show at Biddulph High School in Knypersley, Staffs.
Maria said: “She’s a lovely dancer with natural ability. It’s been amazing to see the progress.”