Tragic Accident Inspires SCC Student

As a nurse who teaches at Sampson Community College, caring for injured people is part of Lisa Smith’s nature. As SCC’s Department Chair of Nursing she has seen a lot and shown others how to react in an emergency. Through a miracle, she happened to be there last fall with her daughter, when both their lives changed forever.

Logan, Smith’s daughter and a Career and College Promise student who will graduate from high school and from Sampson Community College this May, was excited about both. So much so, she and her mother were in Raleigh on September 30th of last year for an appointment to have her senior portraits taken.

As she was walked along the sidewalk, enjoying the lovely day in the state capital, she heard loud screeching and a deafening crash. In seconds, Logan was lying on the ground between a car and a building, bleeding. “I heard screaming from my mom, who ran over to me,” Logan recalls. “I was hidden under the car that hit me. I was coughing up blood and I instantly noticed there was something wrong with my mouth because I could not move it properly to communicate with my mom.”


Logan now with her mom, Lisa.

Logan suffered eleven facial fractures. This included her jaw, which had two major fractures, a crushed left sinus cavity, along with a nasal fracture and an orbital fracture. Logan’s recovery included surgery to wire her jaw back into place and to have three titanium plates put into her face. “These are images you can’t easily forget,” Lisa admits. “One moment, I’m walking around with my daughter taking senior pictures and the next I am holding her and encouraging her to ‘breathe’ and ‘stay with me.’ I had no idea what the injuries were that she suffered right away. At that time, all I could do was pray.”

The fact that Logan’s mother has had a long career in nursing, to include her time at SCC, was a miracle that day but ultimately, it was a mother’s love that pulled her daughter through. Lisa recalls, “I was faced with the hardest question a parent ever has to answer. Logan looked at me and asked, ‘Momma, am I going to die?’ At that moment, it was with confidence I said no, because God has big plans for her. We spent countless hours talking about what could have been but more importantly, the positive results that were going to come from this accident.”

Part of that positive was the chance to tell the story. A story of love, faith, friends and most of all that there is a higher power that wants you to keep trying regardless of circumstance, to pursue your dreams, to do all the things you were meant to do.

“My mom is my best friend,” Logan says. “She has always instilled in me the importance of having faith. I had faith that God was not done with me yet. I believe the hardest part of this whole experience was seeing how upset everyone was. I was grateful to have many close friends and family come to see me in the emergency room on the night of the accident.”

Logan has decided not to let this accident define her, but rather, let what she does after this define her. “My perspective on life has changed as a whole because of the accident,” she adds. “This has shown me how precious life is and how valuable our time here is. There were many things that were going through my mind when I was in the hospital and one of them was all the things that I had not done or accomplished. I decided this is not the end. I am going to move forward!”

“The encouragement and mentorship that Logan received from her faculty and advisors, validates that enrolling in the CCP Program was the right choice,” Lisa admits. “I couldn’t be prouder of Logan’s accomplishments and her ability to take an unfortunate event and turn it into a constructive outcome.”

Logan is grateful for the life she has and is looking forward to her future. “I know my accident was one in a million, even my survival was a miracle. This experience has ultimately shown me that I am here for a reason and I will work every day to pursue the purpose I have in life.”

Not only will Logan be graduating with her high school diploma, but she will graduate with her Associate in Science degree at the same time. She will attend the University of North Carolina-Wilmington in the fall and majoring in Biology. She will minor in Forensic Science and hopes to work for the State Bureau of Investigation.

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