Please help Support Angelina Vuong

Angelina's Story

Angelina Vuong - March 2014

On Saturday evening, April 18, 2015, 18 year-old Angelina Vuong was performing her routine work duties as she neared the end of her shift, when she suffered a life threatening accident of tragic proportions. Angelina sustained severe head trauma, including broken facial bones, fractured skull and bleeding in the brain, and was kept alive by the courageous efforts of her co-worker until the Santa Clara Fire Department arrived on the scene. She was transported shortly thereafter to Valley Medical Center, where she remained in Intensive Care for several weeks, fighting for her life.

Angelina Vuong, a senior at Santa Clara High School, was recently accepted to UC Irvine to start in the Fall of 2015. Born and raised in Houston, Texas until 5th grade, Angelina then went with her mother to attend middle school in Japan. She returned to America several years ago to live with her paternal aunt in Santa Clara, following the agonizing decision of her single mother to afford her young daughter opportunities that would not have been otherwise available to her in Japan.

Upon receiving the phone call regarding her daughter's accident, Angelina's mother submitted immediate resignation to her employer, packed a small backpack of necessities, left her 8 year-old son in the care of his grandmother in Japan, and boarded the next flight to California. The purchase of the flight ticket alone was enough to essentially deplete her life savings, and Angelina's mother arrived at the hospital within 20 hours of receiving the news with just $500 left in her purse.

Doctors and nurses were not sure if Angelina would make it. Family members all gathered around her. Angelina's uncle drove back from Louisiana to visit her. Her friends and teachers from school folded 1000 paper cranes to pray for her life. With her strong will and the power from everyone's prayers, Angelina miraculously recovered. Still she faces a very long and uncertain road to full recovery. Her mind is still set on going to college although her plan to attend UCI will be delayed. Her drive to become a doctor or social worker to help others is even stronger after this accident. But she can only take baby steps right now. She is working hard in rehab to regain her strength.

The Santa Clara Firefighters Foundation has provided immediate financial assistance to Angelina's family, but given the long-term recovery that is to be expected with victims of such injuries, there will be a continuing and dire need for further financial assistance. Angelina's mother is going back to Japan to make arrangements to bring her 8-year old brother to the US so she can continue to support and care for Angelina. We are hoping to raise enough funds to alleviate their financial stress when the remaining $500 is exhausted, so that Angelina and her mother can focus on what really matters—bringing her to a full recovery.

Donations can be made via check or online payment, and Angelina's name should be included in the memo line. All donations are tax deductible and will be earmarked for Angelina and her family. 100% of funds received will go to them!

All funds collected for Angelina by the Foundation will be used as needed for Angelina's health, education, support, welfare, and personal needs, to be distributed at the discretion of the Board of Directors of the Foundation. Any donor may specify how his or her donation should be applied for Angelina's needs.

Thank you for your generosity, and may Angelina and her family find the strength to overcome this most difficult time.

Agelina Vuong after her accident.


Update on Angelina

 "I will be sending another update after my appointments with the neurologist (because we do not know whether these seizures will continue for the rest of my life or not).  

The whole month of August, I had not headaches whatsoever. My family and I were sure that my brain was successfully healing, but from September 1st, I started to take painkillers (Ibuprofen) every day due to frequent headaches. 2 days before the seizure, I started to get fevers and I could not sleep very well through the night. On the day of the seizure, I remember I was looking at pictures of my brother's soccer game on my mom's phone. According to my mom, I sighed deeply and stretched my entire body. She soon realized that I was shaking uncontrollably, my face tense, teeth clenched with foam dribbling from the side of my mouth. My mom was able to call 911 but the seizure ended by the time the paramedics came. Throughout the whole seizure I was not conscious, and even in the ambulance I felt like it was a dream.  I was at the ER from 1pm to 8pm, awake but drowsy from the medication. 
Since then I have not had any headaches at all. No tingling, no seizures. "