By Kathy Walsh
AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – A woman severely burned in a fiery crash on Interstate 25 left the UCHealth Burn Center Tuesday after spending more than a year in treatment.
Jamie Ketchum’s story is one of suffering and survival. Her recovery is attributed to her hard work and the doctors, nurses and staff at UCHealth who cared for her.
On Tuesday, in a hospital conference room prepped for a party, Jamie entered to a standing ovation. She was graduating after spending a year and two months, 425 days, the longest stay ever in the Burn Center.
“Every bit of her was burned,” explained Dr. Anne Wagner, Medical Director of the Burn Center at UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital.
On May 25, 2017, Jamie was in a fiery crash on I-25. A dump truck collided with the Ketchum’s SUV. Jamie’s father was killed; her mother severely burned; her husband hurt. Jamie, 37, had third and fourth degree burns over 95 percent of her body.
“I think it’s miraculous that she’s alive, and she’s doing great,” Wagner told CBS4 Health Specialist Kathy Walsh.
Wagner called Jamie’s case the worst she’s ever seen. Jamie’s legs and one arm were amputated.
“I don’t think she ever for one second ever thought of giving up,” said Wagner.
Jamie graduates from UCHealth with gratitude for the caregivers she and husband, Troy, call family.
“Thank you all for saving my life and… I know that you’re all there for me if I need you moving forward,” she said choking back tears.
Jamie leaves UCHealth headed to a rehab facility. Her hospital family has faith she’ll keep on fighting.
In a statement, the Ketchum’s said:
We are thankful to the doctors and nurses at UCHealth, family and friends, first responders and law enforcement, and those who provided assistance at the accident scene.
The UCHealth Burn Center is the Rocky Mountain region’s only American Burn Association (ABA) verified burn center.