Lumby woman adjusting to life after losing both legs in separate incidents

Help get Katherine home

A Lumby woman is adjusting to life after losing both her legs in separate incidents.

Friends have organized a GoFundMe campaign to get Katherine Wilson back home after the removal of her second leg in September.

Wilson lost her left leg below the knee in 2016 after complications from herniated disc surgery in 2004 damaged the tendons in her leg beyond repair.

She recovered well from that surgery and was walking unaided in just six weeks.

"I adjusted really well ... because I was in so much pain before, it was almost a relief," Wilson said from Vernon Jubilee Hospital, where she is recovering from the latest amputation.

Then came Sept. 4 of this year, when an infection in her right leg was diagnosed as osteomyelitis.

Osteomyelitis is an inflammation or swelling in the bone that can result from an infection, often as a result of an injury.

"It attacked the bones in my foot and could have been deadly," she says. "It progressed really fast."

Wilson says the loss of her second leg has been a "huge change" in her life.

The first go round, she could still drive and get around well.

Now, she's waiting for her surgery incision to heal after it tore open the first time she tried on her new prosthetic.

"I will have to learn to walk again," she says, once she's able to wear it.

For the meantime, she's been at VJH for three months as her sister looks after her 11 and 17 year old children.

Her mother, who lives with the family, also fell and broke her hip just two weeks before Wilson's latest surgery.

While she's been in hospital, friends raised enough money to have a stair lift installed in her Whitevale home, and once she gets home, she will be assessed for having hand controls installed in her vehicle.

Wilson says the community support has been "amazing."

"It blew me out of the water how people have stepped up."

She expects to be in hospital through Christmas and hopes to be home after that.

Allison Kilgour Heck, who organized the fundraiser, says it's hoped the effort can also fund the installation of an accessible bathroom and monthly bills while Wilson rehabilitates.

"She has been through so much, and we would like to help her transition into her new way of life with a bit less worrying," Kilgour Heck wrote.

Community members have also held a bake sale, silent auction, bottle drive and Lumby businesses have put out collection jars to help Wilson.

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