It was so good to see Bridget Conlogue serving up meals at the China Dine-ah. To understand why, you need to know that, in August, she was in a horrible car crash in Augusta that nearly took her young life, less than 2 months after graduating from Erskine Academy...

The crash, caused by a 16-year-old from Mount Desert Island, totaled both vehicles involved (Bridget was the most seriously injured). Among other things, she had fractures in her left arm, including a left elbow that needed reconstruction, and fractures in her lower back. She also had closed head trauma which caused for some interesting exchanges between her and others when she regained consciousness. She remembers none of it. I know because Bridget and I have a lot in common.

When I was 18, just a couple weeks after graduation, I was in a horrible crash. I went into respiratory arrest twice on the way to the hospital. I, too, had a closed head injury and, like Bridget, don't remember the crash or much for the first few days after I regained consciousness. I am told I did everything from insult my friends to reach up nurses dresses. At least they think I was unaware ;-) (joking...really!!)

So, Bridget's back at the Dine-ah and I'm happy. I know what it's like to come that close to checking out. Both of us agree, while a bad accident like this is devastating, you gain a whole new respect for the fragility of life