One of two teens injured last month in a crash on Lake Wylie is paralyzed from the chest down, according to her mother's social media posts, her soccer team and law enforcement officials.
Carolina Rapids youth soccer team has raised more than $60,000 toward helping their teammate, McKenna Woodhead, 14 .
The personal watercraft crash was first reported in The Herald just minutes after the June 25 incident. McKenna was left paralyzed below her chest, according to a public Caring Bridge site and public Twitter postings made by McKenna's mother, Michelle Woodhead.
McKenna was transferred from Carolinas Medical Center intensive care unit after several days to Levine's Children's Hospital in Charlotte where she is going through rehabilitation, her mother wrote.
Michelle Woodhead thanked the community for prayers. Friends have sent posters with "#McKennaStrong" to decorate McKenna's hospital room. McKenna attends Clover High School in York County.
McKenna's family has kept people updated through social media. Family members at the Woodhead home declined to comment Friday.
Carolinas Medical Center spokesperson Lea Ramsey said Friday McKenna is in good condition.
In one of her posts, Michelle Woodhead also praised the other girl on the watercraft for being a "hero" after the incident.
The other girl, also 14, whose name has not been released, pulled McKenna out of the water, said Lance Cpl. Jeff Vissage, the S.C. Department of Natural Resources officer investigating the crash.
Vissage confirmed McKenna has a spinal injury and has been told the same information shared publicly by family that McKenna is paralyzed from the chest down.
The crash investigation is ongoing, Vissage said. Because of injuries to both girls, state DNR investigators have not yet had a chance to get statements from them, or to find out if the two were still on the watercraft when the watercraft smashed into a retaining wall.
Thomas Finlay, executive director of the Carolina Rapids soccer club based near Lake Norman, N.C., said the family has shared with the club that McKenna is currently paralyzed. The club started a GoFundme page with a goal of $20,000, but that goal was exceeded more than three times in days.
"McKenna is a wonderful young person and people have really stepped up to help," Finlay said.
The club is planning a fundraiser from ticket sales at an August Charlotte Independence soccer game and a T-shirt sale with all proceeds going to the family.
"We all are committed to helping McKenna and her family," Finlay said.
Former Winthrop University soccer star Henry Kalungi, who coached McKenna in youth soccer, visited her at the hospital this week and said her spirit and determination are "incredible."
"McKenna is a wonderful, strong, amazing young person," Kalungi said. "If any one person can make it through this, it is her."