LOCAL NEWS

Utah Teen Who Survived Gunshot To The Head Gets New Robotic Arm

Mar 15, 2021, 8:50 PM | Updated: 9:11 pm

AMALGA, Utah – Deserae Turner, a Cache Valley teenager who survived a bullet wound to the head several years ago, is now getting used to a robotic arm to help her recovery.

This is a pretty exciting time for Des Turner and her family. This comes just as she started a new job as a hostess at a Logan restaurant.

In February 2017, Turner was shot by two classmates who lured her into a canal. She’s gone through more than a dozen procedures since then. She lost vision in her left eye and continues to go through physical therapy. Her left arm was paralyzed.

With winter showing signs of ending in rural Amalga, Turner entered into a sort of springtime for her own life.

“Oh man. It just makes my heart so happy,” she said. “I was hoping that getting this arm would help me feel that next step as an adult. And now that I have it, I’m like, ‘Yeehaw guys, I did it! Let’s go out, here.””

She is almost 19 years old now and is brimming with excitement and gaining more independence.

“My arm, it still has the same movement. It’s still weak,” she explained.

The limb has had very little movement, but that will soon change as Turner learns how to use what she called her “expensive new toy.”

“God gave me this personality of don’t quit, never give up. And I can really thank Him for giving me what I needed to accomplish these challenges,” she said.

Deserae Turner. (Mike Anderson/KSL-TV)

She’s grateful, not only to God but to so many strangers who donated to help this cause. The family still paid a decent chunk of the total cost, but they could not have done this without the community.

“I’m so grateful for everyone that has helped me, and I wish I could just give everyone a big hug,” Turner said.

She is working on another way to thank them all.

“My amazing neighbors came and planted me some plants right when the day I came home and I loved them,” she said.

She and her family are planting hundreds of flowers.

“All along that fence is irises,” she described excitedly. “Plants are amazing, they can survive through a hailstorm.”

She’s gained an unexpected appreciation for them. They are resilient, just like Turner. She would like couples to drop by, maybe on a date, and walk away with some flowers of their own.

She said, “It makes me happy. I hope it makes them happy.”

Turner took one other step towards adulthood. She just filed her papers to become a service missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

She said she wants to serve in the Cache Valley.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Handcuffs in a jail cell FILE PHOTO (Ravell Call/Deseret News)...
Pat Reavy

Sandy man threatened to kill parents after shooting TVs, police say

A Sandy man was charged Friday with shooting two televisions and threatening to kill his parents and go on a killing spree.
14 hours ago
FILE PHOTO...
KSL.com

West Jordan man arrested in child porn, voyeurism investigation

A man who described himself to police as being highly skilled with computers has been arrested for allegedly possessing child porn and placing hidden cameras in his home.
14 hours ago
A former administrator of a popular Facebook group used for inviting singles to parties was ordered...
KSL.com

West Jordan man ordered to stand trial in sexual assaults at party for singles

A former administrator of a popular Facebook group used for inviting singles to parties and other events was ordered Friday to stand trial on multiple charges of rape and sexual abuse.
14 hours ago
Salt Lake County Jail (Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)...
Pat Reavy

Agents report finding child porn, bag of children’s underwear in Utah man’s home

A man was arrested Thursday after agents reported finding hundreds of videos of child pornography in his home and a bag of children's underwear.
14 hours ago
A mentor at a youth residential treatment center in Millcreek was charged Thursday with sexually ab...
Pat Reavy

Mentor at Millcreek youth treatment facility charged with sexual abuse

A mentor at a youth residential treatment center in Millcreek was charged Thursday with sexually abusing a resident.
14 hours ago
$400 million set aside for tax cut...
Brooke Williams

Gov. Cox signs student voucher bill, trans medical bill

Gov. Cox signed two bills Saturday morning and released statements regarding each.
14 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 Reasons You May Want to Consider Apartment Life Over Owning a Home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t Let a Ransomware Attack Get You Down | Protect Your Workplace Today with Cyber Insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Utah Teen Who Survived Gunshot To The Head Gets New Robotic Arm