A Connecticut woman was paralyzed after a tree fell on her during the first of three nor'easters that hit the region this month, but friends say she's remaining hopeful she can one day walk again.
Victoria Gouletas, a real estate attorney, marathon runner, elected member of Wesport's Zoning Board and mother of three was crushed by a tree during the storm on March 2.
Gouletas broke her neck and back and was told that she would never walk again. Despite the tragic news, her friends said she remains hopeful.
"She is incredibly determined to recover. When told 'paralyzed from the chest down'--she doesn't accept that," said Melissa Kane, who has known Gouletas since she was 16 years old.
Known to be a fighter, Victoria started physical therapy shortly after the incident.
Facing mounting medical bills, her family looks to potentially renovate their home in order to make it wheelchair-accessible, and members of their community have stepped in to help. A GoFundMe page created by Gouletas' friends and neighbors raised more than $100,000 within two days.
"It could have been any of us, and I think that the blessing of this Westport community is we have so many active, engaged parents that recognize that and do something about it," said Clair Benmosche, Gouletas' neighbor.
Right before the Nor'easter brought a tree down on Gouletas, she had listed her home, but may need to stay while she recovers from her injuries. Luckily, the community has stepped in to help.
"Things happen, and the fact that the town responded that way is terrific. I hope the best for her," said neighbor Peter Green.