MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) — The family of the female hockey player injured in a high school game Friday says she’s still unable to move her legs, but is beginning physical therapy.
Students at St. Croix Lutheran High School are wearing blue Wednesday to honor Jenna Privette. Blue is the color of the cooperative hockey team the 18-year-old senior was playing for when she was hit from behind into the boards and injured.
School President Gene Pfeifer says Privette’s father, Dan Privette, said that doctors have identified ways they can treat the injury. He says Jenna is also fighting an infection from one of her IV connections.
“As we have a learned a little bit more we are optimistic, for a good prognosis that her recovery over time will maybe even be a full recovery. So now we are focused on how can we help the family, there is going to be a lot of medical bills coming up,” said Pfeifer.
According to Pfeifer, the Christian school is devoting daily prayers to Privette in chapel and in classrooms.
St. Croix Lutheran Privette was injured in a game she’d dedicated to 16-year-old Jack Jablonski, a Benilde-St. Margaret’s hockey player paralyzed in a Dec. 30 game.
“I am in her religion class, and she had prayed for all the hockey players in Minnesota because it was getting so violent on the ice and things like that,” said fellow senior Marissa Lucio. “We miss her, and we want her back, we want her walking with us in graduation and graduating with us.”
Student leaders spearheaded an effort to make bracelets for Privette, which will be available Thursday. The blue bracelets will be printed with “Jenna #23-In Our Hearts”, at five dollars each with proceeds going to Privette’s medical bills.
“Reminded us that bad things happen to good people and together we can get through it, and I think it’s a good life lesson for all of us here, when things do go wrong, having friends and fellow students supporting you is really neat,” said Maria Gruetzmacher, St. Croix Lutheran senior class president. “Jenna has always been a fighter. And I give her credit for that. She has been through some other injuries and pulled through and I know she will pull through this.”
Privette overcame a concussion from softball and was known as the top hitter on her team, according to fellow teammate Sarah Gehl.
“She can overcome quite a bit,” said Gehl.
“I think she spoke to me that she even had some aspirations for playing and participating in sports and in college, so we hope her recovery goes well and those life dreams can continue,” said Pfeifer.
A fund has been set up to help Jenna and her family. Donations can be sent to “Jenna Privette Fund” at Anchor Bank, 66 E. Thompson, West St. Paul, MN 55118. Donations can also be dropped off at any Anchor Bank location or at St. Croix Lutheran
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