Family of Danielle Loftus, now 25, remains grateful this Thanksgiving

Linda Rider

Eleven years after Danielle Loftus, then 14, sustained a traumatic brain injury in a jet ski collision on Lake Springfield, signs of neurological activity give her parents hope to carry on.

“She’s still in there,” Jeff Loftus said during a recent interview with The State Journal-Register.

The Loftus family plans to gather for Thanksgiving dinner Thursday with Danielle, their two other young-adult daughters and other loved ones.

Jeff Loftus, 58, a Springfield native, and Lynell, 53, from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, said they remain thankful to God for Danielle’s health at age 25, as well as their own health, a spacious home in Springfield, stable at-home jobs and supportive friends and relatives.

Jeff and Lynell are faithful Roman Catholics, members of Blessed Sacrament Church and self-employed publishers of the monthly “Heartland Homes” real estate magazine and other materials.

With their younger daughters out of the house and at college and working full-time, respectively, the Loftuses are dedicated to keeping a regular schedule that helps Danielle remain healthy and, they believe, content.

They said they are willing to wait for progress in medical science, or a miracle, to cure their daughter, who isn’t able to move on her own or talk. They don’t plan to ever put Danielle in a nursing home. They take care of her.

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