NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - A triathlete, formerly of Douglass in Nacogdoches County, is tonight recovering in a Houston hospital after being struck by a car.
Cheyenne Meyer was cycling at the time as part of her training for a major national competition.
The 23-year-old obviously won't make the race, but what she told the East Texas News is an inspiration for competitive spirits.
The outgoing and spunky competitor gave a thumbs up from her Houston hospital bed. The "can do" spirit will help as she recovers from a serious accident that cut her two-hour training ride short.
"While I was out riding I got to about 55 minutes, and then when I woke up, I was in a helicopter, so a car actually hit me," Meyer said. "I definitely suffered a lot of injuries, but I'm really lucky to be alive."
News spread across social media about Meyer's accident and the six-hour surgery that followed. East Texas friends and family are reaching out with concern and prayers.
They remember Meyer as a successful track and field competitor at Douglass High School,where she graduated in 2011.
"There's always been a fire burning in my heart to be competitive," Meyer said. "I lost my mom back in January of 2015 and she was always really supportive of me in my academics and athletics."
Her mother's cancer battle inspired the runner to enter new sports. Drive and determination created the triathlete Meyer is today.
"It was getting to the point where I was an elite athlete, so I was starting to race with the faster people," Meyer said.
Sponsorships and medals came with the success. This summer Meyer was the first overall female at Run Houston! Clear Lake in the 10K.
At the time of her accident, Meyer was training for next Saturday's National Championships for Triathlon taking place in Omaha, Nebraska.
"It's going to take me a while to even get to where I can work out again, so I'm just going to have to accept that. Things are about to change a lot for me," Meyer said.
She will rely on courage and that thumbs-up attitude to get back in the race.
Meyer is expecting to stay at least another week in the hospital. Her physical therapy will last much longer.