'It's like crazy': Ava Jones back on the basketball court after crash
WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) - It's been four months since a July 5 crash changed Ava Jones' life, and hit pause on the Nickerson High School basketball star's basketball career, but she's pushing past all expectations.
Back on July 5, police in Louisville, Kentucky said a driver under the influence hit Ava, her mother Amy, brother Creek and father Trey while they where in the city for her basketball tournament. The crash killed Trey, and critically injured Ava and Amy, leaving them fighting for their lives.
KAKE News has followed the family's road to recovery ever, from the weeks spent in a Louisville rehabilitation center, to the support here in Kansas and finally their return home in August. Ava told KAKE's John Hayes Sunday that that support has kept her going through all of the many highs and lows of her recovery.
"It's like crazy. I mean I can't even fathom it," said Jones. "It's just crazy and it gives me more motivation to, you know, I mean I'm doing the most I can do, but to get back on the court someday, eventually."
Currently, Ava said she has to commute to Wichita three times a week as she works to build up her strength, and bring her body back to as close to normal as she can get it.
"My physical therapy and occupational therapy and speech, the people that have been doing it are great," said Jones. "Right now it's so much better than it was and everything I've done before they tested me on that first day and it's just gotten so much better in a short amount of time."
That progress was made clear by a video shared on social media Saturday, showing the University of Iowa commit practicing dribbling, coordination and shooting a basketball.
Ava announced in a tweet that on Wednesday she'll sign her National Letter of Intent to play for Iowa.
"That was actually my first time I've trained in like six months, five months," said Jones. "The first clip I dribble with my right hand, trying to, and I can dribble with my left hand like normal, but my right hand is just not normal."
What Jones said does feel normal, is getting to practice at all, something she told KAKE News she doesn't take for granted given everything that she's been through. She said she plans to get as much practice time as she can in between therapy sessions and upcoming surgeries to help her heal.
KAKE News also asked Jones if there was anything else she wanted to add to her supporters.
"Just thank you to the community, I mean country," Jones said. "A lot of people from Iowa have been supportive. And yeah, it's been crazy."