Melissa Stahl finished the Harrisburg Mile Wednesday night. It was a feat the Elizabethville resident and Air Force veteran never thought she would accomplish after breaking her legs in a car crash just eight months ago.
“It's just a matter of putting one foot in front of the other,” Stahl said before the start.
Stahl was unable to walk until March. At one point she was told she may never walk again. But after months of painful physical therapy, Stahl lined up at the starting line and began her mile long trek.
The friends at her side and her determination helped Stahl continue to put one foot in front of the other.
The accident happened in November in upper Dauphin County. Stahl said she was going to dinner with her husband when an oncoming car crossed into their lane.
On Wednesday, right before crossing the finish line, Stahl smiled. Afterward, she tearfully hugged her friends. One person even handed her a medal.
“You realize the limitations that other people have, then you can appreciate more when you can do the simple things, even walk a mile…which may not be something for some people, for others is might be more difficult and I understand that better now,” Stahl said after finishing.
Stahl said she will be back to participate in the Harrisburg Mile next year. Her goal is to run the race.
Her husband also survived the crash.