Life can change in the blink of an eye

Jody Garofalo

BREWERTON, N.Y. -- On Thursday night, friends and family of Jody Garofalo were working to make sure everything is in place for a benefit to raise money for her general living expenses on Sunday. Everyone out at Jake's in Brewerton was busy getting prepared. The extra large support network for one of their closest friends has become an invaluable lifeline.

On Dec. 21, Jody Garofalo was hit in Syracuse while crossing the street by a driver who was under the influence of drugs and alcohol. Among her devastating injuries was the loss of an artery, which, up until Jody, no one who has had the surgery has survived. 25 surgeries and three months in intensive care have only been part of her recovery. Those are the facts and now we'll tell you the stories that her friends are sharing about how their lives have been changed.

Marie Hoyt is one of Jody's lifelong friends. " It was really scary it was unbelievable , I was so shocked and surprised . W e live really far so it was the middle of a snowstorm and we drove out to the hospital a n d the doctors told us that there was basically no chance that she would make it ," says Hoyt.

Jody defied those odds and survived. Six months after the crash, Jody recently told her friends on Facebook she managed to work up the strength to do the dishes. Given where all this started, that's a small victory.

Elizabeth Grosso has known Jody since they were in middle school together. "T here's a reason that Jody is still here. There's a reason that so many people other that myself support her and there's just hundreds that are grateful and supportive that she's here . What happened with Jody makes you stop and realize to take that time because you might not have that tomorrow to grab that connection that you had and not let it slip away as easily," says Grosso.

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