Natasha McShane, from Armagh, who was attacked with a baseball bat in Chicago this summer may be at risk due to an infection she contracted in hospital in Northern Ireland.
The post-graduate student had been flown from the U.S. to Belfast’s Musgrave Park Hospital after having brain surgery.
McShane’s father Liam, told the Belfast Telegraph, that he now “feared the worst”.after she got the superbug He told the paper that he fears his daughter will die from this infection after surviving the vicious baseball attack over the summer.
The Belfast Health Trust released a statement saying that it has reduced health care associated infections by 30 percent in recent times and said that it is impossible to totally eradicate them.
On a good day, she might point to what she wants or offer her parents a smile. But she cannot speak, dress herself or go to the bathroom without assistance. And so there are days when, her father says, "she just cries."
Then, her parents cradle her and whisper: "You're OK. You're OK."
Natasha McShane is back home in Northern Ireland. She is safe and protected and doted on by her loving parents. But she is not OK.
WGN VIDEO: After Two Years Bucktown beating victim can't walk or talk.
The last year has offered no respite from the surgeries and struggles that have plagued her since a brutal mugging in Bucktown, which occurred two years ago this coming Monday.
"You think she is going to get better, but it actually gets worse," said McShane's father, Liam, speaking by phone from the family's house in Siverbridge, County Armagh, and describing what his daughter's life is like now. "You think, 'In six months she'll be doing this or be doing that.' But the months pass and there is no progress."
Two years ago, Natasha McShane was an exuberant 23-year-old exchange student, working on her master's degree and out for a night to celebrate an internship that would allow her to extend her stay in Chicago.
She and a friend, Stacy Jurich, were walking home from a bar at 3:30 a.m. in the 1800 block of North Damen Avenue when, according to police, they were struck from behind by a bat-wielding mugger.
McShane, who stands less than 5 feet tall, took the brunt of the beating and was left bleeding and unconscious on the sidewalk. Hospitalized for months, she initially made small but steady steps toward recovery. In July 2010, when she left Chicago by air ambulance, she had begun to eat again, walk with assistance and speak a few words, family members say.
But, in Northern Ireland, a surgery to replace a section of her skull resulted in a serious infection. Then came a bout of seizures, followed by fluid building up around her brain. She regressed quickly, and soon, she could no longer walk or speak.
In Chicago, police arrested Heriberto Viramontes, 33, a reputed gang member, who, according to prosecutors, had seen the two women as "easy targets." Marcy Cruz, 27, had driven him to the area, waited in a van and smoked a marijuana-stuffed cigar during the attack, according to prosecutors. Held at Cook County Jail, Viramontes and Cruz each face 25 felony counts, including attempted murder and armed robbery. No trial date has been set.
Back in Northern Ireland, Natasha McShane has just enough movement on her left side to hold a teacup. The only word that she can say is "shin," but no one knows what it means. "Shin could mean a hundred things," said Liam McShane.