Car accident leaves student wheelchair-bound

Libby Hill

Libby Hill

Generally when a person breaks both of their legs, their tailbone and pelvis, and also injures their spleen, liver and lungs, one wouldn’t necessarily consider them “lucky.”

However, with alcohol related crashes killing a person every half an hour and injuring individuals every two minutes, it’s easy to see Amy Vickroy and Dietr Poppen as very lucky individuals.

Vickroy, a SDSU sophomore, and Poppen, a recent SDSU graduate were driving near the 12th St. exit on I-29 when Douglas Lottman, age 55, hit the pair head-on while driving the wrong way on the interstate. Lottman was allegedly intoxicated. The accident was then complicated when another car T-boned Vickroy’s car.

While Poppen was briefly hospitalized, Vickroy’s injuries were more serious and left her wheelchair-bound for several months until rehabilitation enables her to walk again.

“I’ve always been very against drunk driving. People don’t realize how dangerous it is, how horrible, how it affects your life and other people’s lives,” remarked Vickroy.

Poppen took time to reflect on the importance seat belts played in the accident.

“Some people don’t think the shoulder strap is important, but when I came to, the dash was 3 inches from my head. Sure, some of our injuries came from the seatbelts, but without them, we’d be dead,” he said.

As Christmas and New Year’s approach, drunk driving increases and so does the risk to all drivers on the road.

“You need to think about it whenever you drink … how it could affect everyone. There are so many things you take for granted,” Vickroy said.

Vickroy faces medical debt of up to $300,000. Donations in her name can be made at any U.S. Bank or First National Bank in Brookings.

#1.886564:1055562659.jpg:AmyVickroy#2Web.jpg:Amy Vickroy uses this office chair to get around her house after her accident.: