A joyful family gathering turned into a horrifying nightmare when young Lanny Use suffered a tragic accident while playing on a motorized go-kart. What should have been a safe and fun activity turned into a life-threatening ordeal for the little girl, leaving her parents distraught and hoping others can learn from their traumatic experience.
The incident occurred during an October 2018 party in a Louisiana backyard, surrounded by loved ones. Lanny was riding a child-sized yellow go-kart, once belonging to her uncle, that was designed for safe enjoyment. With her parents nearby and the vehicle restricted to a slow “turtle” speed, they believed she was in good hands.
Tragedy struck when Lanny’s hair, which had been tied up in a bun for added safety, came loose as the go-kart’s bumpy ride jostled her around. Unaware of the danger, she continued to circle happily, until her hair got caught in the motor belt behind her, violently pulling her head backward and causing serious injuries.
Her parents were horrified as they witnessed the accident unfold before them. Lanny’s scalp was nearly torn off, and she suffered skull fractures and brain trauma. Despite emergency services being called, her parents decided to rush her to the hospital themselves. The situation was dire, and the little girl’s survival was uncertain.
At the hospital, Lanny underwent a five-hour surgery to address her fractured skull and brain injuries. Surgeons used dissolvable plates to repair her skull and reconnected her scalp without the need for a skin graft. While the surgery saved her life, she faced challenges in the aftermath, including seizures and psychological issues.
Months of recovery and therapy followed, with Lanny showing resilience and determination. However, she still copes with daily seizures and other residual effects of the accident. Her parents are vigilant in providing the support she needs, but they also want to share their story to raise awareness about the potential dangers of go-karts and to encourage other parents to prioritize safety precautions.
Despite the pain and hardships they’ve endured, the Use family remains strong and cherishes the light moments amidst the darkness. Lanny’s hair has grown back healthily, and she now enjoys being a loving big sister to her baby sister, Presley.
The family’s ordeal serves as a cautionary tale and a reminder that even seemingly harmless activities can turn tragic in an instant. By sharing their experience, they hope to spare other families from similar heartache and encourage them to prioritize safety measures, such as securing hair and wearing helmets when riding go-karts. Their message is clear: it’s better to be safe than sorry, and every child’s well-being should be the top priority.