CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Donations for a Charlotte family are pouring in to help cover the medical costs of a recent UNC Greensboro grad.
She's recovering from major injuries after she was thrown from a rental car in Ecuador.
The accident happened two weeks ago on a celebratory vacation, and now the family is desperately trying to get her back to the states for treatment.
Thursday's flight back to North Carolina was canceled because of the storm. They're hoping to get on a flight Friday, but in the meantime, they've racked up a $100,000 hospital bill in Ecuador.
The fun-filled family trip to celebrate Anna Kristen Poteat's graduation and upcoming wedding changed in the blink of an eye.
“They were in a rental vehicle and the car careened off the side of a mountain they went about 80 feet down, and Kristen was ejected from the vehicle,” said her cousin Diana Mendoza.
Poteat suffered major injuries including a spinal fracture, and she's been in and out of consciousness. Now, she is finally stable enough to travel back to the states.
"We just want her home," said Mendoza.
While she waits, Mendoza is anxious to help.
"We never thought anything like this would happen, and they're so far away we don't feel like we can do anything, so that’s why we started a GoFundMe,” she explained.
There's a lot of red tape around international insurance. They wouldn’t admit Poteat to the hospital until someone paid, and the hospital bills keep adding up. Right now, the family owes more than $100,000.
"This can happen to anybody you go on vacation, and you don't really think about anything bad happening, you go to have fun,” said Mendoza.
Donations have been pouring in; they exceeded their original goal in less than a day.
"We were all very touched by how fast that happened and how quickly everyone’s responded."