Chen Wen-chi (陳紋娸) and her mother, Chang Hui-ju (張惠如), were honored on Tuesday last week with a “life education award” by the National Chi Nan University Affiliated Senior High School in Nantou County, after Chen beat the odds to get her high-school diploma.
Chen, who graduated from the high school’s extended education division’s department of economics and management, comes from a family that runs a small shop that has been in the family for many generations. While studying in high school she worked in various jobs.
In February last year, Chen, then a senior-year student, was traveling to a work meeting when a car crashed into her scooter, causing massive head injuries that left her in a coma.
Despite the severity of her injuries, Chang always had faith that Chen would recover.
After 78 days in a coma, two major operations, along with acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine, Chen finally regained consciousness.
Despite losing some of her memory, Chen remembered that she had not finished her last school semester and wanted to finish her education.
Chang said that since Chen’s vision and ability to remember facts was impaired after the injuries, she escorted Chen to school every day and helped her with her studies.
Chang said that Chen’s determination to get her diploma — despite the long hours of rehabilitation — made her proud.
“All the hardships are worth it when I see what she has achieved through sheer force of will,” Chang said.