Salina Woman Loses Leg; Gains New Lease on Life
Todd Pittenger - Fri 03:01 PM 03/16/2012
Shasta LeDuc with some of the firefighters from Salina Fire Station #2 who responded to her accident.
A Salina woman who lost part of her left leg in an industrial accident in January has a new outlook on life, and plans to participate in the upcoming "Fools Day 5K" running event as a tribute to Salina firefighters who helped her the day of the accident.
Back on January 19th, the lower part of 33-year-old Shasta LeDuc's left leg was crushed in an industrial accident at PKM Steel. LeDuc tells KSAL News that she thought she was dying.
LeDuc's leg had been freed from the machine that crushed it when Salina Firefighters arrived. She says that the firefighters who helped her, and rode with her in the ambulance to the hospital, were "amazing", calling them "real heroes".
LeDuc says that firefighters prayed with her in the ambulance. As they treated her, they also did their best to keep her spirits up. She told them that she was a runner, with a goal of running in a 5K race. They told her that the department was organizing a benefit race in the Spring, the "Fools Day 5K". LeDuc told them she would like to participate in it.
After arriving at the hospital, LeDuc learned that her leg could not be saved. She says that one of the hardest things she has ever had to do is sign paperwork giving doctors the okay to amputate. Her lower left leg was amputated, just under the knee.
LeDuc says that the accident changed her life, for the better. She is more active in church, and volunteers at a nursing home. She has become closer with her children, and reconciled with her mother who had been estranged. She says now that strangers go out of their way to help her, holding a door open, or simply offering a kind word and a smile.
LeDuc has also become close with the "real heroes" at the Salina Fire Department who were there for her when she needed them the most. She and her children have visited Salina Fire Station #2 several times.
Among the firefighters who helped LeDuc, and rode in the ambulance with her, were Paramedic Brad Burr, Firefighter / EMT Limber Ibarra, and Firefighter Chris Rios.
Burr has been with the department for 14 years. He tells KSAL News that he has been to numerous critical calls over the years. He says this call is one of the worst he has dealt with.
Ibarra has been with the department for only about a year. He tells KSAL News that he will probably never forget that day back in January.
LeDuc vows to participate in the "Fools Day 5K". She plans to walk a mile on her crutches.
The "Fools Day 5K" is Saturday March 31st.
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