- Sikeston singer moves on with 'The Voice' (10/16/17)
- Police chief, council: Cape Girardeau faces growing gun violence (10/17/17)4
- Politics to profits: Brothers launch new investing concept on Wall Street (10/19/17)1
- Load shift kills Jackson trucker (10/17/17)1
- Developer asks court to OK tax district board for improvements near Hobby Lobby (10/17/17)4
- The last person to be laid to rest at Old Lorimier Cemetery: Mary Russell Fox (10/17/17)2
- Cape Christian School burglarized (10/18/17)
- Food Giant in Chaffee is robbed (10/17/17)
- Cape's casino flourishing as it celebrates fifth year (10/22/17)3
In 1998, a brain stem stroke left Amber Lackamp of rural Jackson in a coma. Doctors predicted she would soon die. When she didn't but was left paralyzed, able to communicate only by blinking her eyes, doctors told her parents she probably would die within a few years.
They didn't listen. Neither did she.
Her graduation last weekend from Southeast Missouri State University is only the latest reason doctors now refer to her as "their miracle."
The young Jackson woman's recovery from the stroke has been unrelentingly difficult. First she moved the little finger on her left hand. Eventually she uttered her first word -- "Mom."
The feeding tube that nourished here was not removed for more than six months. Each tiny step Lackamp has taken on her way back has required unfathomable strength and determination.
Lackamp was in her senior year at Southeast when the stroke occurred. Eventually she began taking classes on the Internet. This past semester, she finally returned to a classroom.
She can type again, though only left-handed. She can walk again, though with difficulty and the use of braces.
Now 28, Lackamp graduated with a bachelor of science degree in human environmental studies with an emphasis in child development. She wants to work with disabled children.
Here's a prediction: Those children will be very lucky.