A 33-year-old woman who was caught in the crossfire of a shooting has said she intends to live a good life regardless of her injuries.
Natalie Bignell was rendered a quadriplegic by injuries sustained when she was a bystander to a shooting in Hackney in November 2020.
As a result of being shot through the neck Natalie was left with a C4 spinal cord injury which means she will never walk or use her hands again.
READ MORE: Woman paralysed from the neck down after being hit by stray bullet in East London
Speaking to MyLondon, Natalie says she is determined to battle through as much physiotherapy as she can to live a long and happy life and has set up a GoFundMe to fund her treatment.
She said: “The GoFundMe page is for equipment, treatment and physio.
(Image: Jade Alcock)
“I’m currently not getting as much as I used to. I had a lot during my recovery stage but haven’t had much further support. It’s basically so I can live my life which has obviously been massively changed.
“I’m nowhere near where I was, it’s a struggle.”
After the incident, Natalie’s life changed forever.
After being rushed to the hospital where she received two life-saving surgeries, she lost the ability to move or feel anything from the neck down.
But against all the odds she was left with no brain damage and can breathe without assistance, despite her spinal cord being damaged.
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Injuries like Natalie’s require a lot of treatment.
She needs 24-hour care, specialist equipment, regular physiotherapy, and accessible home that is able to cater to all of her needs.
Though Natalie’s care is partially funded by the NHS, she cannot receive a regular income because of her condition and is not able to fund the additional help she needs.
To help her, Natalie’s family and friends decided to set up a GoFundMe page to help support her, which has raised close to £50,000.
For this, she says she is eternally grateful.
She said: “My family have been amazing, they’ve been really supportive. I had to give up my job, I’ve began to go back to work part time, that’s all I’m able to do now. I want as much normality in my life as possible.
“I have a lot of goals for my new life I want to work towards. I want to get as much movement back as I can and use my art to build awareness for spinal cord injuries.
“I feel like my life has been completely changed but I’ll do everything I can to have a good quality of life. I have a lot of idols with spinal cord injuries who live a good life and see no reason why I can’t.”
Three men are facing trial over the shooting in which Natalie was caught up.
Earlier this year, Akile Lee-Walton, 23, was charged with attempted murder, grievous bodily harm with intent, conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm with intent, possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and possession of ammunition with intent to endanger life.
Reuel Briscoe, 28, was charged with conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm with intent, possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and possession of ammunition with intent to endanger life.
Jeremiah Briscoe, 24, was charged with conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm with intent, possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and possession of ammunition with intent to endanger life.
All three are set for trial at the Old Bailey on July 25, 2022.
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