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Mum of Australian artist who was run over by a train in New York opens up on their 'year from hell'

The mother of an Australian artist who was crushed by a train in New York City before contracting COVID-19 has opened up their ‘hell of a year’.

Visaya Hoffie, 23, had a double amputation after she fell into the path of an oncoming train in Manhattan on January 11. 

The Brisbane artist also suffered a broken back, several head wounds and severe cuts and bruises after she was run over by seven carriages. 

Ms Hoffie and her mother, Professor Pat Hoffie, tested negative to coronavirus before leaving the U.S.

Visaya Hoffie fell onto the train tracks at 14 Street Station (pictured at the same station)

Ms Hoffie (pictured in hospital) survived being run over by seven carriages

Visaya Hoffie, 23, had a double amputation after she fell into the path of an oncoming train in Manhattan on January 11 

She suffered a broken back, head wounds and several cuts and bruises after the freak subway accident

She suffered a broken back, head wounds and several cuts and bruises after the freak subway accident

But the 23-year-old later tested positive after being taken to Queensland’s Princess Alexandra Hospital for treatment while her mother completed mandatory hotel quarantine.

Prof Hoffie said she isn’t dwelling on the the tragic events 2020 has brought her family. 

‘Actually the whole planet has had a hell of a year. But every day is a good day, that’s the way I look at it. The rest is just data,’ she told The Courier Mail. 

Ms Hoffie hasn’t let the amputation of both her legs get in the way of her art, and is working on a line of hand crafted bags with her best friend Wayan Preston.

‘She is already getting orders for the bags. She uses responsibly sourced kangaroo leather. The brand name is lizandbetty, Elizabeth is my middle name and hers,’ Prof Hoffie said. 

Prof Hoffie, a professor emeritus at Griffith University, created a self portrait of her wearing personal protective equipment to represent when she was finally allowed to visit her daughter in hospital after weeks apart.

Her mother Professor Pat Hoffie said she isn't dwelling on the the tragic events 2020 has brought her family

Her mother Professor Pat Hoffie said she isn’t dwelling on the the tragic events 2020 has brought her family

The 23-year-old later tested positive after being taken to Princess Alexandra Hospital for treatment while her mother completed mandatory hotel quarantine

The 23-year-old later tested positive after being taken to Princess Alexandra Hospital for treatment while her mother completed mandatory hotel quarantine

The artwork, called PPE, was on Sunday announced as a finalist for the Brisbane Portrait Prize. 

Following her near-death fall, Ms Hoffie filed a petition at Manhattan Supreme Court seeking video footage, photos and witness accounts from the night she fell onto the tracks of the 14 St PATH station. 

In an affidavit obtained in February, Ms Hoffie claimed she was struck twice after being left on the tracks for an extended amount of time.

‘After the first train left the station after running me over, I was left on the tracks for another considerable period of time … until a second P.A.T.H. train came along and hit me again,’ the document stated.

She also claimed the operator of the train should have been able to see her since she fell in a well-lit area of the tracks and was wearing bright-coloured clothing.   

The artist avoided being hit by a second train due to her bright pink top that captured the conductor’s attention.

Prof Hoffie shared a photo of her daughter taken just moments before the incident wearing the shirt that she said spared her from being hit a second time.

‘This image of her [Visaya] was taken hours before the accident,’ she wrote in a Facebook post. 

‘The bright pink colour of her top is what alerted the engine driver of the second train to the fact that someone was lying across the track.

Ms Hoffie (left) wrote on Instagram: 'Wearing the top that saved my life. Terribly missing my sister'

Ms Hoffie (left) wrote on Instagram: ‘Wearing the top that saved my life. Terribly missing my sister’

Ms Hoffie's mother and late father Santiage Bose are both well-known in Brisbane's art scene

Ms Hoffie’s mother and late father Santiage Bose are both well-known in Brisbane’s art scene

‘When the first train had rolled across her unconscious body twenty minutes earlier, her black puffy jacket and black jeans had made her invisible to the driver.

‘In the words of the investigating police, ”it’s a miracle she survived.” Please pray that she continues to survive and to heal and to come home.’

Ms Hoffie also took to Instagram in February to upload a photo of her outfit, captioned: ‘Wearing the top that saved my life. Terribly missing my sister.’      

Ms Hoffie’s work was showcased at the Queensland College of Fine Art’s graduates collection in 2016, under the name Visaya Bose.

Her mother and late father Santiage Bose are both well-known in Brisbane’s art scene. 

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