DENTON, Texas -- This Saturday, Amber Lacy will walk across the stage and graduate from the University of North Texas, just a few years after she nearly lost her life.
"I did it!" Lacy told WFAA.
In May 2013, four days after her high school graduation, Lacy was injured in a car accident in her hometown in Louisiana. She was riding with friends, sitting in the backseat behind the driver when her life changed in an instant.
"It ended up t-boning us, and I got the most impact because it hit right where I was sitting," Lacy recalled.
It took the jaws of life to get her out of the vehicle. She was eventually transported to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with a collapsed lung and a traumatic brain injury. Lacy said doctors put her in a medically-induced coma, and when she came out of it, she discovered she couldn't read or write fluidly. She struggled with words, and she couldn't even walk without help because of her disturbed balance.
Her plan to go to college at Louisiana State University was put on hold, but she said she never lost hope.
"I never, ever took my eye off the prize," said Lacy. "I knew I was going to get this point."
Even during months of physical therapy and treatment, she started taking classes at a community college. In 2015, she transferred to UNT. And this Saturday, in front of her family, she will graduate with a degree in broadcast journalism.
She wants to work for a children's hospital in communications to give back in some way to the doctors and nurses who gave her another chance to pursue her dreams.