Bloomingdale rape survivor shares her recovery online - WFLA News Channel 8

Bloomingdale rape survivor shares her recovery online

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Queena's high school portrait Queena's high school portrait
Queena in therapy Queena in therapy
BRANDON FL (WFLA) -

She was planning for her senior prom and her big move to the University of Florida when everything changed.  On the five-year anniversary of her brutal attack, the girl known as the "Bloomingdale Rape Survivor" is going public with her story.

Her name is Queena and she's 23-years-old with a smile as radiant as ever. 

"When I have a bad day I come home and I see her and her smile and it just puts everything in perspective," said Queena's sister Anna Vuong.

Queena still can't walk or talk, but her therapists say she's making progress and learning how to stand again.

"She wants to get better and we know that she can," says occupational therapist Lan Nguyen Cassella.

Family, friends, and doctors are now chronicling her journey towards recovery on JoinQueena.com.  The site went public last week.  Vuong says Queena helped make the decision to use her real name and pictures of her face.

"To be able to put a name and a face to someone they think about everyday and pray for, I think it just touches the community and inspires everybody a little bit more," explained Vuong.

In its first week online, people donated more than $8,000 to help pay her medical costs.  Vuong says a lot of Queena's therapy is not covered by insurance.  The website has also brought the family a different kind of support.

"They get a lot of positive comments and a lot of interaction to show that there really are a lot of people out there who care," said Paula MacDonald who helped create the website.

Vuong says that makes all the difference.

"We as a family would never be able to make it through and stick together and stay strong without knowing that we have such a huge army behind us," said Vuong.

The student government at East Bay High school is planning the second annual "5K4Q" fundraiser.  The 5K race and fun run is on May 18th

Kendrick Morris, the man convicted of assaulting Queena, is serving a 65-year prison sentence.  Investigators said he was 16-year-old when he raped her.

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