Accident leaves Ponoka girl unable to use her legs

A day of tubing over the Christmas break went from a fun family time to an emergency that left one girl with no feelings in her legs.

Ponoka resident Samantha Wiebe was involved in a tragic accident over the Christmas break in Saskatchewan that left her with no feelings in her legs. The family is working on a GoFundMe fundraiser to help them as she transitions back to her home in Ponoka.

Ponoka resident Samantha Wiebe was involved in a tragic accident over the Christmas break in Saskatchewan that left her with no feelings in her legs. The family is working on a GoFundMe fundraiser to help them as she transitions back to her home in Ponoka.

A day of tubing over the Christmas break went from a fun family time to an emergency that left one girl with no feelings in her legs.

Ponoka resident Samantha Wiebe, 18, was with family in Saskatchewan last Christmas when she and a her cousins decided to go tubing. While the tube was being pulled it swung around and slammed into a round bale. The family knew something was wrong when Samantha told them frantically she couldn’t feel her legs, explained her aunt Damaris Rempel.

“No one knew in the beginning what the extent of the injury was,” she explained.

Checks from doctors showed that her lower vertebrae was shattered, which caused her serious pain. Rempel says that while the spinal cord is intact the prognosis for Samantha is that she will never get feeling back into her legs.

After celebrating her 18th birthday in the hospital, Samantha is about ready to return home to Ponoka and will continue to receive physiotherapy at the Ponoka Hospital and Care Centre, however, the family also faces the cost of updating their two-story home to accommodate Samantha’s needs. Another complication for the family is dealing with insurance; the accident happened in Hague, Sask. and while it appears some insurance will be covered, it is taking some time to receive the funds.

Rempel and other family members are hosting a fundraiser night in Saskatchewan and have also set up a GoFundMe page at www.gofundme.com/pdvhyzwk to help the Wiebes. After a few short days donations have started rolling in with more than $2,000 donated so far.

The goal with the fundraiser is to help with moving and transition costs, explained Rempel. In the midst of this chaos she says Samantha has been a true leader throughout the ordeal.

“Every time we go there she’s get a big smile on her face,” said Rempel.

“She’s just been a role model in how to understand these circumstances,” she added.

For more information call Rempel at (306) 281-5707.