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Community rallies around Airdrie girl critically injured in freak accident

Emily Power was hospitalized after being hit by a falling tree near Waiparous, Alta. on Aug. 29, 2016. COURTESY: Power family

An 11-year-old Airdrie girl continues to recover in Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary after being struck by a falling tree.

The incident happened Monday near the village of Waiparous. Emily Power was in a truck with her sister while her father and brother were cutting down a tree for firewood.

“I guess they ran out in front of the tree at the very last moment and so apparently, Emily just froze,” Steve Power, Emily’s uncle, said. “She didn’t know what to do and it (a tree) came and struck her directly on the head.”

Power said the tree narrowly missed Emily’s older sister but impaled Emily through her chest.

“They managed to get her into the truck and brought her out to an area where the helicopter had arrived, but she was very unstable at the time,” Power said.

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Emily suffered fractures to her skull and vertebrae, chest injuries and brain trauma.

“She’s a strong girl but she’s in a very fragile state right now,” Power said. “She’s a fighter though.”

Emily was in a medically-induced coma at the Intensive Care Unit at Alberta Children’s Hospital but as of Saturday morning, family members say there has been some improvement and she was able to be taken off the breathing apparatus.

“It was touch and go for a few days.” Power said. “The doctors at the Children’s Hospital are world-class. They basically saved her life.”

Power’s niece is now in stable condition has more surgeries scheduled. A GoFundMe campaign has been started by the family to help Emily’s parents pay the bills.  By Saturday afternoon, the page had already surpassed its fundraising goal of $15,000.

“They have jobs but they’re not in a situation where they can afford to take extended periods of time off without pay,” Power said. “So they have some immediate financial needs that we are trying to help them with. This is going to be a very, very long road and it’s a struggle for them.”

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