Woman who had face and hands torn off in horror chimp attack makes emotional return to visit hospital staff who saved her life
A woman who was savagely mauled by her friend’s chimpanzee has made an emotional return to visit the doctors and hospital staff who saved her life.
Charla Nash, 57, wore a veil over her face to hide the disfigurement caused by the February 2009 attack.
She underwent more than eight hours of surgery after the 200lb chimpanzee, called Travis, ripped off her nose, lip, eyelids and hands before it was shot dead by police.
Emotional return: Steve Nash, the brother of attack victim Charla, wipes tears from his eyes as his veiled sister meets hospital staff. it has been more than a year since Charla suffered horror injuries
Life savers: Ms Nash said that, without the dedication and compassion of hospital staff, she would not have survived the attack, where a pet chimp tore off her face and hands
The pet chimp went berserk after owner Sandra Herold asked Nash to help lure him back into her house in Stamford, Connecticut.
Nash was filmed by NBC’s Today show hugging members of the emergency room staff that helped her recover from the nightmare ordeal.
Without them, she said, she ‘wouldn’t be standing here’.
Nurse Summer Kruger said she would never forget the victim’s courage and strength.
She said: ‘my three days with her I will remember for the rest of my life.’
Before the attack: Charla Nash, now at an assisted living facility in Boston, is awaiting word on whether she is eligible for hand and face surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital
Chimp and owner: Pet chimpanzee Travis and his owner Sandra Herold in February last year. Travis was shot dead by police during his attack on Ms Nash, and Ms Herold died of a heart attack this year
Nash is currently at an assisted living facility near Boston, Massachusetts, and awaiting word on whether she is eligible for hand and face surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
She first revealed the damage done to her face in an interview with Oprah Winfrey a year ago.
As well as the injuries she suffered in the mauling, she had both eyes removed because of an infection.
Sandra Herold died in May from a heart attack.Nash’s family has sued her estate for $50 million and has launched legal action against Connecticut authorities for another $150 million – saying state officials failed to prevent the attack.
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