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Cuba teen paralyzed by accident receives new wheelchair van

A new gift means Gabby Kranock is on the road to freedom, a month after she got home from the hospital.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — "I'm at a loss for words, really," Dennis Kranock of Portville said on Wednesday morning. 

He and his wife Lisa have watched their 18-year-old daughter Gabby fight through the unthinkable over the last four months. She was standing outside with her friends back in September, when they were struck by an alleged drunk driver. 

"Gabby was left paralyzed. Her friend was killed on the scene and another one was seriously injured," Dennis said. 

Gabby has lost a lot, but not her smile, or her work ethic. She even made high honor roll this fall. 

"She's kept in really good spirits," Dennis said. "Kept hear head up. She has her down days, but who wouldn't?"

Gabby came home from the hospital last month, and now, she'll be able to go other places, too. On Wednesday, West Herr and Hope Rises presented her parents with a wheelchair-accessible van at their Chevrolet dealership in Orchard Park. 

"She's ecstatic about it," Dennis said. "She can't wait for us to get home with the van so she can go out and enjoy and see things."

It's a gift to Gabby, from the community. West Herr worked with Hope Rises to match donations to pay for it. Twenty thousand dollars came from a single anonymous donor. 

"We all can have a little pride in the fact that we're helping the family a bit, and we hope Gabby's comfortable," West Herr marketing director Matt Lasher said.

Added Hope Rises founder Kate Glaser: "The gift of mobility is such a precious gift, and she was robbed of her ability to be able to walk because of this tragic accident. So when we heard about her story we knew we had to get involved."

Main Mobility converted the van to work for Gabby's needs. 

"This means a lot, getting out, going to dinner, seeing friends, going through a park," sales manager Chris Carden said. "It helps people heal. It really makes a huge difference." 

Up until her accident, Gabby was a star basketball star at Cuba-Rushford High School. She already has her first trip in her new van all planned out. 

"Tuesday or Wednesday next week she has a basketball game for the school she wants to go to," Dennis said. "It's their senior night, so she wants to be able to attend that so this will help to get her there."

If you'd like to help Gabby's family, you can donate through GoFundMe

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