Shaylee Belke was with her father, Brad, doing chores on their family farm when she was severely injured. As Brad was feeding cattle, he was startled by a loud smacking sound. He turned to see his daughter launching through the air after being kicked by one of their horses.

Brad, who is a registered nurse, dropped his feed and ran over to Shaylee. He saw her condition was serious and decided to not wait for an ambulance. He placed Shaylee in his truck and headed to the nearest hospital, calling 911 as he drove. Once he arrived, the girl was placed into an ambulance and taken to the next closest town, which had a slightly larger hospital.

“I lifted up her shirt and you could see a big horse hoof print on her stomach, so we knew it was pretty serious,” said Brad. “But she started to wake up and was making sense, so I was a little bit relieved with that.”

Once the ambulance arrived at the hospital, the doctors realized she’d need urgent care from a trauma centre. That’s when STARS was called to take her there quickly.

“I can’t imagine, if STARS hadn’t been able to come how it could have turned out differently,” said Shaylee’s mother, Eliza. “With kids you just never know. They can turn on a dime.”

Since her incident, Shaylee has made an incredible recovery, participating in numerous activities such as gymnastics, baseball and the 4-H youth engagement organization. To her parents, it seems there’s nothing that can slow her down.

“You look at her day today, and she’s back to her vibrant little self,” Brad said. “It was scary not knowing what the outcome could be, but she turned out perfect again.”

Shaylee’s parents are grateful for the time, tools and talent the STARS crew provided that day. They also know that we can’t be there without allies like you who donate and support our work.

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