Brain-Damaged Woman Talks After 20 Years
“HUTCHINSON, Kan. – For 20 years, Sarah Scantlin has been mostly oblivious to the world around her â€” the victim of a drunken driver who struck her down as she walked to her car. Today, after a remarkable recovery, she can talk again.
Scantlin’s father knows she will never fully recover, but her newfound ability to speak and her returning memories have given him his daughter back. For years, she could only blink her eyes â€” one blink for “no,” two blinks for “yes” â€” to respond to questions that no one knew for sure she understood.
“I am astonished how primal communication is. It is a key element of humanity,” Jim Scantlin said, blinking back tears.
Sarah Scantlin was an 18-year-old college freshman on Sept. 22, 1984, when she was hit by a drunk driver as she walked to her car after celebrating with friends at a teen club. That week, she had been hired at an upscale clothing store and won a spot on the drill team at Hutchinson Community College.
After two decades of silence, she began talking last month. Doctors are not sure why. “
Can you imagine what it must be like to be unable to communicate, to be locked inside your own head with little to no way to tell the world that you are alive.