National Mobility Awareness Month Partners:

Denise Windsor

Tina, MO

Entry Photo for Denise Windsor - Tina, MO

With no notice at all her world was turned upside down in the blink of an eye, or in her case over the course of a few months. My mother became very sick one afternoon so my sister and I rushed her to the ER. Due to sepsis in her body her blood pressure dropped. It was so low for so many days that the medications used to raise her blood pressure killed all of the tissues in her hands and feet. This happened in September 2013, surgery was December 2013 and in February 2014 she was returning to her own home with bilateral below the knee amputations, left hand amputation and the amputation of all of her right fingers.

Yes, you read this correctly. Denise returned home, just her and her husband, with quadruple amputations. She has been an inspiration to not only us, her four children, but to the entire community. Literally the day we took her to the emergency room she was cooking a meal in preparation for an upcoming catering job. My mom has worked supremely hard her entire life, supporting four children and working two jobs. She was a hair dresser for 20+ years and also a caterer; both of which she relied on her hands and feet. We as a family had no idea the impact she had made in our community and surrounding communities until this happened. Soon we came to realize we couldn’t go out in public without someone asking us about her. She has been amazing and is almost completely independent in her daily life.

The one thing my mother is no longer able to do is drive. Not only can she not drive, she has a manual ramp for her van and has to constantly rely on someone else to get her from place to place. Unfortunately she is always feeling like a burden to others because she is less independent than she was before. She has never, not one day, complained about her circumstances and doesn’t ask for anything from others. She always says she’s just glad to be alive to see her ten grandchildren grow up and is thankful for her amazing family and friends. She still has so much life to live and deserves the independence that a handicap accessible vehicle could give her. To know her is to love her and she truly deserves this opportunity.