FORSYTH COUNTY, N.C. (WGHP) – Lauren Krell’s life was changed in a fiery crash, but her fighting spirit was not broken. 

According to Winston-Salem Police, an impaired driver was speeding and driving recklessly when he crossed the center line hitting Krell’s SUV head-on along Skylark Road, just north of Pfafftown.

“She survived being trapped in a burning car for 20 minutes,” said Tracy Krell, the victim’s mother.  

The 21-year-old victim remembers everything up until the moment of this crash. 

“She says ‘I woke up broken’ and all she knows is the stories she’s heard and the pictures she’s seen,” Tracy Krell said. “We have five senses, and she doesn’t have any of that, she was just on her way home taking the back roads at sunset.”

Krell said her daughter’s SUV flipped and burst into flames because of the crash. 

Krell was flown to the hospital. It was the first time she saw her daughter after the crash.  

“On the left side was her shirt tore open and on the right side were her jeans that she had on,” she said. “Her face was a color purple I’ve never seen before, the swelling was incredible on the right side of her face, she’s just laying there unconscious.”

Krell had a traumatic brain injury, burns, and broken bones all over her body.  

“Lauren was unable to use three of her four limbs, both legs and her right arm for 12 weeks,” Tracy Krell said. 

Scars on her body are reminders of the crash. 

Krell defied the odds by spending only 11 days in the hospital. She had four surgeries in four days and halfway through her stay she regained consciousness.  

“To know that someone who we’ve been watching for five days in this horrible accident not knowing the outcome,” she said. “She’s got brain injuries, she’s got broken bones, how she’s going to be, and here she is talking and recognizing.”

Now, five months into her recovery Krell is walking, talking, and even making jokes. Despite her severe injuries, she is back on the road, something she loves to do.  

“Shine baby, just do, you’re here for a purpose and you’ve been saved for a reason,” Tracy Krell said. “You’ve got great things ahead of you and it’s going to be exciting to see.”

Krell said the new way of life would not be possible without faith in God, strong prayer and community support.  

“There’s nothing like the laughter of your child, there’s nothing like the smell of their hair, that hug, feeling their warmth, so just please love your children, and love your family, tell them you love them every day, because life is truly precious,” she said. 

Bills for Lauren Krell’s medical treatments have stacked up. 

Ava’s Cupcakes is hosting “A Taste of the Town” gala to go towards her medical expenses on December 3 at the Mary Alice Warren Community Center in Lewisville. It’ll include food, music, a silent auction and more. Tickets are available on Eventbrite.