by David Kellin, email@example.com
A single moment changes us forever. On November 29th, 2018, a dog that 16 year old Ashlynn Plyler had in her Jeep, jumped into her lap as she was driving. The Jeep drifted into the ditch and hit the crossover into a field and flipped several times. Ashlynn was thrown from the vehicle and sustained a many injuries. Injuries to her neck, ribs, spine, pelvis were instantly life threatening.
Her younger sister traveling ahead of her was able to get help quickly, and Ashlynn was airlifted to Charlotte. She was in the pediatric intensive care unit for three days and had two surgeries to place rods and pins in her pelvis and spine to stabilize her bones.
In those first few hours, she received two blood transfusions that saved her life. Two bags of blood that she commented on. “Two people, I did not know, gave me blood and that saved my life.” An event that changed her forever.
Ashlynn is the middle sister of three girls. She is well known not only in Pageland, but around the region. She has competed in several the region’s pageants and captured the crown several times.
She is an excellent student and had been attending Central High. Since the accident, she has been on home-bound instruction and working to regain the ability to walk and adapt to neurological pain that has accompanied the placement of the rods in her spine.
A purpose has grown in the days and months since the accident. A deep desire to make a difference in other’s lives. Encouraging people to donate blood, so others can live also. Ashlynn is partnering with the Red Cross and community agencies to hold a blood drive at the end of August. She has become aware of the critical shortages on the blood supply locally and nationally. The blood drive will be Thursday, August 29th 1:30pm-6:30pm at First Presbyterian Church of Pageland Fellowship Hall, 207 S Maple St, Pageland, SC 29728 . She hopes to make this an annual event.
“The first night when I was airlifted to the hospital before I could have any surgeries, I had to have two blood transfusions because I was bleeding internally. Those two blood transfusions saved my life and I’m truly thankful for them and whoever took just a little time out of there day to donate blood to save my life” said Ashlynn. “You could save someone’s life just by taking out a little time of your day to donate blood and whoever receives that, i am sure will be so grateful. If you have the chance to save someone’s life, what is stopping you?”
It is important to call and make a commitment to attend as it helps the Red Cross to know the level of commitment and the number of people to send to help. Contact Ashlynn at 843-337-8372 or Elaine Robinson at 843-680-3027 to arrange for a time. You only need to give your name and an email. If you have given before, you will already be in their system.
Ashlynn’s mother Kristin Plyler added “Throughout all of this, we have learned that life is precious. We have been blessed to have good doctors.” She talked about a time when Ashlynn was looking for prom dresses and she had commented to Ashlynn that her scars were showing. Ashlynn’s reply was “My scars are what makes me who I am.”
As we talked, some Bible verses connected to where Ashlynn is now. James 1: 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
Ashlynn is going to save lives. She is determined to get as many people as she can to donated. Those donations will go to the next person in need, and help them to live another day. It is moment in time that will impact many in months and years to come. From depths of pain come healing for Ashlynn and countless others.
Editor Comments: Some articles are so very close to home. I have know Ashlynn for years. To stand in the roadway, and to see her scars sent chills down my spine. I continue to be amazed at the strength of Ashlynn and how she is turning a really bad experience into a positive. I am grateful for the two donors that gave blood without knowing who might receive it. I am grateful that Ashlynn is alive to ask you to donate. Please help save another life by donating a pint or two -David