Faces in the Crowd: Taylor Grill

It was just about a week before her 17th birthday, New Underwood teenager, Taylor Grill sustained injuries from a head on car collision that would change her life, but she is not letting that accident define her.

NEW UNDERWOOD, S.D. — In February this year, a teenage girl, Taylor, and her brother, Cade, were in a head on collision near New Underwood.

Cade & Taylor Grill, before the accident

Cade & Taylor Grill, before the accident

Both teens survived the crash and one is now thriving despite big obstacles.

Car Crash

Car Crash

Diana Grill, Taylor’s mother, says, “We’re just amazed that either child walked away from the accident alive.”

Taylor and Cade were driving home when catastrophe hit. Cade walked away with minor injuries while Taylor had two broken legs and a severely damaged left arm that had to be amputated.

Taylor in hospital

Taylor in hospital

Her father, Jeff, recalls Taylor made two goals the first week in hospital, “She said the first thing she was going to do was walk into school when school started, which was this fall and she was gong to play volleyball when volleyball started.”

The sport has been a big part of her life – she also enjoys riding horses and is not letting her condition stop her from doing the things she loves.

Taylor in wheelchair

Taylor Grill, New Underwood Senior, says, “I was just thinking that it’s just gonna be huge that I’m gonna have to overcome, and I was so ready to get out of there and just get back to the gym and keep working and stuff, and just try to improve the best I can – even if I don’t play, at least I can say I tried.”

Volleyball Teams praying for Taylor

Volleyball Teams praying for Taylor

Her mother says doctors were impressed on how fast she is recovering- crediting Taylor’s positive attitude that has kept her thriving and thrusting forward.

Taylor says, “I was just so determined to not let that keep me in bed and just keep going and do the best I could. I feel like it’s actually made me a better player because I’ve had to readjust and really focus on what I’m doing and just do the best I can.

Taylor with friends after hospital stay

Taylor with friends after hospital stay

She’s also inspiring her volleyball teammates. Brandi Brassfiel, New Underwood Volleyball Coach, says, “Oh, they cheer her on and encourage her just like everyone else. And they are super proud of her and how far she has come and the things that she has accomplished since her accident.”

And spreading light to people she’s never met, as they watch her progress on the Pray for Tay Facebook Page.

Taylor practice roping

Taylor practice roping

Jeff says, “A lot of people have said, I thought I had trouble, I thought I had tough days, but watching somebody go through that – I don’t have it so bad.”

Surrounding communities became like extended family, reaching out to show support, even competing volleyball teams. Jeff says, “Taylor, really, that was impressive that somebody you are dealing with on a battlefield is now doing whatever they can to help you get back.”

Taylor practicing with prosthetic arm

Taylor practicing with prosthetic arm

Taylor says she is looking forward to enjoying her last year of high school with friends.

“I decided when I was in the hospital, I can either let this affect me for the rest of my life or I can just keep going and just try and do whatever I can with what I got,” says Taylor.

Taylor playing volleyball

Taylor playing volleyball

Taylor’s legs are healed and she will be receiving therapy for her prosthetic arm in the near future.

 

Categories: Faces in the Crowd, Local News