Councillor well again after crash
UNDERNEATH the billowy shirt was a back and stomach looking like road maps.
Behind the wide smile was a ferocious determination to stay on her feet – in spite of the big biff of real pain.
“I’m here. The surgeons say I’m obstinate and I say no, I’m just motivated to get well again.”
With those fighting words, Councillor Anne Nioa walked into her first council meeting in 11 weeks and in an impossible show of spontaneous smiles, she won over every one of her peers.
Early in June she was hit head-on in a fatal car crash and through the first of a series of operations in Hervey Bay and Brisbane, doctors were doubtful she’d survive.
“Welcome back, Councillor Anne Nioa,” offered Mayor Kruger. “It’s good to see that smiling face in the chamber.”
“As compared to?” was her retort. Ms Nioa hadn’t lost her sense of humour.
“I won’t last all day or every day,” she said. “The doctors say maybe the way I’m going, three-and-a-half days and build from there.
“They say the progress is quite impressive. Frankly, I’m pleased but I think too of the family of Craig Wann who died in the crash and that slows me down a bit.”
Ms Nioa says her seven nights in January taking a holiday at Camp Eden in the Gold Coast hinterland has propelled her recovery.
“They taught me many things there including breathing correctly and I’ve used those new skills to get me to this stage. If you have the tools to achieve goals you can do it.”
Her children, Jackson and Ariane, and her mother Glenys, she says, have “helped enormously”.
“I’m just determined to get back to as normal a life as possible.”