It’s an ambitious goal for a young woman who three years ago suffered a severe brain injury and a fractured pelvis after being struck by a car in an Edmonton crosswalk.
“My mom’s getting married. I asked to walk her down the aisle,” said Lana Kisslinger.
On July 9, 2014, when Kisslinger was 19 years old, she had just finished a shift as a server at Earls Kitchen + Bar on Jasper Avenue.
She was walking across Jasper at 119th Street when she was struck by a car.
Her mother, Colleen Kisslinger, remembers the phone call telling her Lana had been injured.
“It was very severe, they didn’t know if she was going to survive,” Colleen said.
With Lana in a coma, a breakthrough came 11 days later.
“The doctor shouted into her ear saying ‘Lana, give us a thumbs up,’ and that little thumb went up,” said Colleen. “That was the best day ever.”
It meant there was brain activity, and reason for hope, she said.
2017 Courage Award
“At the very beginning it was very rough and tough,” said Lana Kisslinger on Monday at the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital where she was presented with a 2017 Courage Award.
“Don’t give up,” said Kisslinger of her advice for anyone recovering from a severe injury. “It’s a very hard journey at first but it gets easier and easier.”
The crosswalk where Kisslinger was hit now has a full set of lights.
“I renamed them Lana’s lights,” she said, adding she’s glad no one has been killed crossing Jasper Avenue at that corner.
Her mother said it has taken a lot of hard work for her daughter to get where she is today, walking with two canes.
“She’s so deserving of it [the award],” said Colleen.
But the work isn’t over if Lana wants to meet her goal of taking part in her mother’s wedding.
“I need to walk with just my right cane,” said Lana, indicating her left hand will be needed to hold her mother’s arm to walk her down the aisle.
“They haven’t set a date yet because they were waiting around for me to walk,” she said. “Now that…