Orange Park student hit by car still in coma | News

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Orange Park student hit by car still in coma

ORANGE PARK, Fla. -- A First Coast teenager is still recovering after being hit crossing the street after school.

Heather Barnes, 14, was crossing Kingsley Avenue after leaving Orange Park High School with some friends October 25 when she was hit.

"My grandson called me and said 'Grandma, Heather's been hit by a car and it's not good,'" said Joyce Sullivan, Heather's grandmother.

Two weeks after getting that phone call, Joyce Sullivan's granddaughter Heather Barnes is still in a coma.

The car that hit Heather had a green light, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. Troopers say Heather was walking between parked cars on the street before stepping out into the lane with moving traffic.

"I believe if there would've been school zones, guards, a crossing walk, the flashing lights to lower the speed limit to 15 or 20 miles per hour in a school zone, it would never happened," Sullivan said.

Orange Park High School is the only one in the district that does not have a speed safety zone.

To try to change that, Heather's 15-year-old sister Jessica started a petition on

"I'm amazed," Sullivan said. "I'm very proud of her actually for what she's done. At her young age, I'm very proud of her."

The accident has been hard on Jessica, who her grandmother says is trying to be brave.

Heather's brother Justice told First Coast News she had a piece of her skull removed because of the swelling in her brain and is still in a coma. 

But there are signs of hope: Justice said Heather is starting to move her arms and legs. 

Her family hopes their efforts will spare another family the same pain.

"We as a family don't want to see this happen to another family because our Heather is, it's bad. It's real bad," Sullivan said. "As a grandmother, you're sitting there looking at one of your children in this condition and it's just, I don't want to see anybody else go through this," Sullivan said.


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