​Russian Woman Miraculously Survives Life-Changing Car Crash

A 23-year-old woman miraculously survived a devastating car crash, having lost her memory, eyesight, relationship and bright future as a lawyer as a result.


Maria Lebedeva is highlighting her dramatic change in the hope that it will help her find doctors who can help her, while also raising money for the cost of treatment.

The Russian woman was in the horrific crash in her home city of Novosibirsk on 20 August 2016, and has said that the incident has wiped a large chunk from her memory.

"2016 and 2015 have entirely gone," said Maria, who is also known to friends as Masha.

Credit: Siberian Times/East2West
Credit: Siberian Times/East2West

Maria says the crash - which gave her brain damage and spinal and pelvic injuries, and left her in a coma for 10 days - came after a blazing row with her boyfriend of four years, Andrey.

She had apparently been half an hour late for a ride home in his car.

"I was late and when I came he was angry," Maria said.

"When I got in the car, he was yelling at me."

Credit: Siberian Times/East2West
Credit: Siberian Times/East2West

Police found that Andrey had jumped red lights in his BMW 530, and struck an SUV at 50mph. While Andrey and a friend were saved by airbags, Maria wasn't so lucky, being the only one to be injured.

Maria said that Andrey initially came to visit her in hospital, but things changed when her parents were later forced to sue him for £12,700 ($17,700) in medical costs.

"He wasn't there for me when I needed his support," Maria explained.

Credit: Siberian Times/East2West
Credit: Siberian Times/East2West

"He told me: 'Do you think I am the only one guilty of this accident? We are both guilty'.

"I was so angry when I heard that. It was as if he didn't feel guilty at all.

"He didn't regret or apologise, it is disgusting to remember."

Maria also said that friends also deserted her after the crash, adding: "It hurt me so much when I disappeared for everyone.

"Now I realise I didn't have many friends, I had many acquaintances."

Credit: Siberian Times/East2West
Credit: Siberian Times/East2West

She believes that the horrific experience has not only left her without her 'old looks', but has also deprived her of 'much more', too.

Maria used to be a big fan of travelling, dancing and running, but has lost a great deal of independence, especially due to loss of eyesight.

"I miss my independence the most," she said.

"I feel blind when I walk with a stick.

"I can hear how people pity me, especially old ladies.

"I feel defective. I can hear better than I could before the accident - and sometimes it really annoys me, the things I hear."

However, Maria refuses to give up, and wishes to be a flight attendant, and has taken up singing as a form of therapy at a group for the blind.

She is also currently undergoing expensive 'experimental' stem cell treatment, with her family looking for new medical approaches to help her recovery.

Featured Image Credit: Siberian Times/East2West

Jess Hardiman

Jess Hardiman is a journalist who graduated from Manchester University with a BA in Film Studies, English Language and Literature, and has previously worked for Time Out and The Skinny among others.

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