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Orland bus crash victim visits Redding hospital

By Colin Steiner, csteiner@krcrtv.com
Published On: Aug 17 2014 12:57:58 AM CDT
Updated On: Aug 17 2014 01:41:33 AM CDT

18-year-old Jayda Cosar visited Shasta Regional Medical Center on Saturday morning on her way to college at Humboldt State.

REDDING, Calif. -

A young woman seriously injured in a bus crash in Orland that killed 13 people visited the Redding hospital where she was treated.

18-year-old Jayda Cosar suffered burns and severe smoke inhalation after the bus crashed head on with a Fed Ex truck on Interstate Five in April.

The charter bus was carrying more than 40 people, most of whom were high school students on their way from Southern California to visit Humboldt State University. Five of the students died.

Cosar, of Palm Desert, spent six days in the intensive care unit at Shasta Regional Medical Center as she worked to recover from her injuries.

Saturday, she returned to meet with the nurses and staff who took care of her.

"Just saying hello and saying, 'Thank you,' for all of the stuff they did for me," Cosar said.

In a sense, Cosar said some of the nurses became parental type figures for her as her own mother made arrangements to join her daughter in Redding.

"I wanted chicken noodle soup, they brought me chicken noodle soup; I wanted some books, they brought me some books; and they gave me some new glasses. And they really helped out."

Karen Hoyt, marketing director at Shasta Regional Medical Center, said she and many other staff member who treated Cosar became close with her.

"Everybody always wants to know how is she doing, not just in the community but also our staff inside the hospital."

According to Cosar, she's fully recovered and moving on from her ordeal in April.

In fact, she made the stop at Shasta Regional on her way to Arcata, where she's moving to enroll at Humboldt State, the very school she was traveling to when the bus crashed.

"I realized that I can't give up, I can't let something happen in my life and let it take over," Cosar said.

It's that state of mind that has Cosar's mother, Teresa Jones, proud of her daughter.

"She's continuing and going on with her education and not letting the accident stop her from what she wants to do," Jones said. "She's strong and she's ready to go on with life."

And Cosar isn't the only victim of the bus crash who is moving on with life and continuing their path to college, 16 others will start school at Humboldt State in the fall.

Cosar and another young woman treated at Shasta Regional will soon become roommates.

"Despite the stuff that happened to us, we all have a tight bond and we all understand what we're all going through," Cosar said.

And to help Cosar and her future roommate as they transition into being college students, Shasta Regional Medical Center has donated each $10,000.

"I was amazed and touched and I'm really grateful for it," she said.

Ultimately, Cosar feels just as any typical college student would moving away from home for the first time.

"Kind of scary but I'm excited for it."

Cosar said she's also learned an inspiring lesson through the tragedy.

"I realize how fragile life is and how I don't want to waste it."

And she's taking that lesson to her first day of class at Humboldt State on August 25.