Local victim of Indiana stage collapse shares survival story

CINCINNATI - Nearly three months after the disaster, a local survivor of the Indiana State Fair stage collapse is sharing the amazing stories of her daughter's recovery and her own.

Shannon Walcott and her 10-year-old daughter Jade, were trapped and seriously hurt when the stage came down. They were attending their third Sugarland concert - together.

Jade suffered a brain injury. Shannon Walcott had at least ten broken bones and third degree burns. She tells us she's slowly getting her life back after a gust of wind sent the stage crashing down into the crowd. Walcott's still on crutches and had to move into her mother's house while undergoing rehab for a broken pelvis, four broken ribs and vertebrae and the lung problems they created.

She shared what how she became trapped under the rigging. "The way I was injured was slanted on my body. there was something back here, it crossed this way. Of course, I was face down. I woke up on my face, pinned under the rigging."

Shannon told us her daughter Jade was with her. "We were together at the concert the whole time. "When I woke up underneath, I know we were fearful together. We were running - we call it running for our lives together - and when I woke up underneath, I did not see her."

Walcott says she never saw it coming. "Everything was fine until we knew our lives were in danger. Then it was scary. Everyone was screaming. I've never felt so fearful in my life as I felt at that moment.

Walcott told us they were together holding hands, "She screamed 'mommy' and I just grabbed her."

Ten-year-old Jade is back at school now, but only for half days. And she has extensive therapies to make her physically and mentally stronger. Before the accident, she was a talented singer and dancer with dreams of making it big.

Her Mom says those dreams are still alive. "Now it's just a matter of waiting ... for her body and her brain to catch up. She is just like me. Just trying to get our lives back . Some moments are just like the mother daughter moments before the accident. Then there are moments you just break down."

Walcott says she still sees fun moments with her daughter. "She gives a little shoulder shrug to 'Stuck Like Glue' - it's so cute." She says she can't wait for them to go to another concert. "That was our third mother-daughter concert. I hope we have ten more. 15 more. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for that day."

Despite the pain and lengthy recovery Walcott's just thankful they both survived. "It seems like a miracle she's up walking and going to school. I am glad I didn't lose her. It was close. I mean moments close to losing her. So yeah... it is a miracle I get to talk to her everyday...it's a miracle...completely."

The Walcotts haven't yet filed a lawsuit for their injuries. And for that reason Shannon Walcott can't discuss much of what happened before the concert, specifically any warnings of bad weather.

She did say Sugarland's opening act performed under beautiful blue skies.

As for Jade, even her doctors aren't sure about the extent of her recovery. Shannon Walcott says they're just working on each day as it comes.

 

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