Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Telescope

April 26, 2014

Determined spirit

Motorcycle accident doesn’t stop Weiss from doing what she loves

PRINCETON — In a span of a few weeks, DeAnna Weiss, 44, of Peterstown, experienced two very different emotions. She was excited about her new job with the West Virginia State Police, but days later suffered injures from a motorcycle accident. It weakened her body but never her spirit.

Weiss, a graduate of Peterstown High School, worked in the orthodontist business for almost 15 years before she took a job as an office assistant for the state police Princeton detachment.

“I really love working with the state police and the public. There is something different every day and you just never know what you’re going to get. It keeps you on your toes, that’s for sure,” Weiss said. “I do just about everything from answering the phones to filing reports, keeping the sex offender registry updated and much, much more.”

In September of 2009, just a week or so after she started work at the detachment, Weiss was in a terrible motorcycle accident.

“I clipped a car which sent me flying and completely decimated my right leg from the knee down,” Weiss said.

After days in the ICU, doctors told her she would never walk again, Weiss said.

“The best way to get me to do something is to tell me I can’t do it; I am stubborn and I wasn’t going to let this stop me,” Weiss said.

Five years and 14 surgeries later, Weiss is still recovering but has never let her spirit get low.

“I had just started my new job, my insurance had not even kicked in yet when the accident happened. I was worried sick I would lose my job,” Weiss said. “But when the doctors released me, I went back to work. Over the past five years I have had 14 surgeries to reconstruct my leg. The last surgery in March of 2013 was 17 hours long and the worst one out of all of them. I had never been so miserable in my life, I couldn’t sit up, move hardly, I couldn’t have caffeine or other types of food; it was just hard.”

After every surgery Weiss would have to learn how to walk again.

“It would seem like two or three months would go by, I would have another surgery and start all over again back at square one, I had even asked twice to have my leg amputated and the doctors would not do it,” Weiss said. “Everyone at the detachment has been so supportive through everything. Along with my parents, Philip and Janet Weiss and my wonderful boyfriend, Curtis Gore. I couldn’t have done it without them.”

But in between surgeries Weiss continued to stay active.

Just two years after the accident Weiss became a certified Zumba instructor.

“Even if I was just sitting in a chair doing the moves or lifting weights I did my best to do some type of physical activity,” Weiss said.

“I had taken some classes and I really enjoyed it so I decided to do it myself,” Weiss said.

Weiss also teaches a R.I.P.P.E.D class at the Giles Wellness Center three days a week and has been a fitness instructor and personal trainer for about 14 years.

“I was an athlete all the way through school and I just never gave it up. I love staying active and helping others stay healthy,” Weiss said.

Weiss is also an active member of Bozoo Christian Church and still enjoys riding motorcycles.

“I don’t drive anymore, I’m just a passenger these days,” Weiss said.

Cpl. J.C. Long of the state police Princeton detachment said Weiss has been such an inspiration to everyone.

“Out of all the surgeries she has had, I have never heard her once complain or seen her with a frown on her face. She is always smiling and happy and is really an inspiration to everyone around here. I don’t know anyone else that would still have such a great spirit after going through so much,” Long said.

— Contact Anne Elgin at aelgin@bdtonline.com

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