Benefit will help woman involved in accident

Provided photoNursing student Jessica Hooten with her children, 4 month old, Amelia, and 4 year old, Eric. Hooten was involved in a serious automobile accident in May that broke her ankle, tibia, fibula, and hip. The injuries will prevent her from returning to work at Margaret Mary Hospital in Batesville in their ER department for a possible six months.

GREENSBURG — From 7 a.m. until noon Sunday, July 7, Holy Family Catholic Church in Oldenburg is having a benefit breakfast event to help nursing student and full time Margaret Mary Hospital emergency room staff member Jessica Hooten, who was recently involved in a serious automobile accident.

Hooten was on her way to work on May 20 when she was struck by another vehicle. She sustained multiple injuries that will require several extensive surgeries, as well as therapy. It is anticipated that she will be off work for 6 months.

Hooten had just finished dropping off her four month old girl, Amelia, and her 4 year-old boy, Eric, at a family member’s home in New Point preparing to drive to work.

“At the intersection of 46 and Huntersville road, I saw a truck, but then he just disappeared,” Hooten said. “‘Where is this person,’ I asked myself. And I don’t remember any noises, I don’t remember putting on my brake - I don’t remember anything until there was a medic looking over me.

“And then I opened my eyes, and he said I’d been in an accident, but thought ‘no-way’ and then I saw blood on my hands,” she said. “I needed 16 stitches in my forehead. And then as soon as I realized that he was telling the truth, I freaked out and asked ‘where are my kids?’ And as they were putting an IV in my arm, I told them ‘Take care of my kids first.’

“And they kept telling me, ‘Your kids are okay - they weren’t with you,’ but I didn’t believe them because I had forgotten that I’d dropped them off,” Hooten explained.

“After that, I calmed down and let them do what they needed to do.”

“At the accident, I knew that I had a compound fracture in my foot or my ankle,” Hooten said.

“They put me in a neck brace so I couldn’t actually see it, but they told me I had broken something in my ankle. But my hip hurt as well, and my head was bleeding.”

Hooten was life-lined by helicopter to the University of Cincinnati Hospital where she was assessed with tests, scans and x-rays.

“When they got me through all the tests, they put me under because my ankle had become dislocated and they had to reset it,” she said.

“I had a tib-fib fracture and a broken femur, but fortunately my spine was not fractured,” Hooten said.

With multiple external braces installed through her skin, she said that she could move her legs, but not turn her ankle.

“I also had an external brace on my femur, and they thought I had a liver laceration, but that has healed,” Hooten said.

She will return to work when the doctors allow, but what about her studies to be a nurse?

“I’ll have to put that on hold for now,” Hooten said.

Considering the nature of her work as staff in Margaret Mary ER, the doctors have assured her that she will be off work for an extended period of time - possibly six months. With the skin on her ankle not healing well, the surgeons have had to attempt repair from behind, and Hooten will wear a walking brace until Aug. 9. At that point, she will be able to put weight on that leg.

Her mother, Susie, is helping her take care of her children, and her boyfriend is present and active in her life as well.

Free will donations are being accepted at the breakfast, and donations can also be made through Susie Hooten’s home church, Greensburg United Methodist Church, by calling 812-663-LOVE.

Contact Bill Rethlake at 812-663-3111, ext. 7011 or email bill.rethlake@greensburgdailynews.com