Family Rallies For Cancer Survivor Paralyzed In Crash

Published: August 16, 2006  |  Source: news.yahoo.com
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Family and friends of a cancer survivor who was paralyzed in a car accident are coming together to help.

NewsCenter 5’s Jim Boyd reported that Marc Martino’s wife and 4-year-old Matt’s mother, Dana, was paralyzed in a car accident three months ago.

Dana Martino has been undergoing treatment at a spinal cord injury center in Atlanta.

“They told me that she would not move from the neck down, respirator, breathing machine, the whole nine yards,” Marc Martino said.

Dana Martino sustained the injuries when her car was rear-ended in Andover as she traveled home on Interstate 93. Her husband said the accident only compounded problems for his 35-year-old wife.

“She was actually on her way back from an appointment at Mass General, one month removed from a double-mastectomy,” Marc Martino said.

But Marc Martino said his wife is not one to dwell on the negative.

“I remember telling her it’s OK to be in pain. It’s OK for people to feel sorry for you. She wants nothing to do with that. She’s a true fighter,” he said.

Marc Martino said despite the doctor’s prognosis, Dana has shown remarkable improvement.

“She is sitting up on her own. She is moving her legs on her own. Yesterday was the first time she fed herself on her own,” Marc Martino said.

William Artis, 29, of Hooksett, N.H., was arrested and charged with causing the crash in which Dana Martino was paralyzed.

“I need to concentrate on my family. I can’t concentrate on the person that did this,” Marc Martino said.

It was Artis’ third arrest for driving without a license.

“It’s a good feeling to have so many people behind us. I have a large family. Dana has a large family. And just all the friends through the years — they’re all coming together,” said Marc Martino.

Neighbors and friends of the Martino family are helping by hosting a fundraiser Thursday night to help the family pay the mounting medical, travel and living expenses.