Irvine teen walks out of hospital after 60 foot tree fell on her

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Teresa Johnston, 14, walked out of HealthBridge Children's Hospital after a 60 foot tall tree struck her in February.

A teenage girl who was struck by a 60 foot tall tree in Irvine during a February storm walked out of the hospital on Friday.

Teresa Johnston was out walking her neighbor's dogs on Feb. 17 when the tree, likely weakened from recent storms, fell on her and caused major injuries.

"These first couple of weeks, we were saying goodbye, we really truly were. They told us she was on a tightrope and she could go either way," her father Dr. Roch Johnston said.

The 14-year-old underwent intensive care at HealthBridge Children's Hospital after she suffered severe brain trauma and broken bones to her head, face and spine. Doctors used metal plates to reconstruct her skull.

Her family and the hospital called the teen's recovery nothing short of a miracle.

"Very momentous occasion and we're so excited to see how well Teresa has done," Linda Mortimore with HealthBridge Children's Hospital said.

Teresa Johnston was greeted by friends and family as she walked out of hospital in Orange.

"I want to thank each and every person who has offered prayers, sacrifices and support for Teresa's well-being," Roch Johnston said.

Doctors said remarkably there was limited residual damage to the teen's speech and motor skills. Teresa Johnston's friends said they were thrilled to have her back.

"I'm so shocked, but I'm so surprised and happy. It's amazing. It's such a big difference. It's amazing," her friend Marie Marchand said.

The Johnston family said there was still a long road ahead as the teen had at least three more surgeries.

A YouCaring page was established to help the Johnston family with medical expenses. To learn how to donate, click here.

Related Topics:
tree fallstormstorm damagewinter stormchild injuredteenOrangeIrvineOrange County
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