Teen Hit By Car Has A Long Road Ahead To Recovery

Emma-Mae (Photo courtesy Stephane Gnolfo)

POINT PLEASANT BOROUGH – It’s been 12 days of intensive care and medical treatments for a 14-year-old girl who was hit by a speeding car in Point Pleasant while she was out riding a bicycle with her friends. Although Emma-Mae is making progress, she has a long road ahead for recovery.

Stephanie Gnolfo, Emma-Mae’s mother, tells Jersey Shore Online that her daughter has been transferred to another hospital which specializes in brain traumas. She had been at Jersey Shore University Medical Center ever since the August 9th accident on Route 88 but was transferred to a new medical center over the weekend.

Gnolfo said “Emma-Mae is having severe migraines due to the concussion as well as the bleed on the brain and fractured skull. But she is the strongest kid I know and one hell of a fighter.”

A GoFundMe page started by Kristen Cutrona of Toms River has raised a total of $26,631 so far. The goal was originally set at $10,000 but due to the additional medical expenses for the extensive treatments, it is now set at $50,000.

The victim identified as Emma-Mae on the GoFundMe page set up for her medical expenses (Photo courtesy GoFundme)

The Point Pleasant Chamber of Commerce has announced they will have a special fundraiser for Emma-Mae on August 25th during the Point Pleasant Give Back Day.

Gnolfo adds “I am forever grateful for all of the well wishes and prayers. It means so much to us.”

Emma and two friends were riding their bicycles at 10:30 p.m. on Thursday, August 9th when they attempted to cross Route 88 at Sunset Avenue. They looked all ways, and believing it was clear, the two friends started to cross. However, Emma was hit by what was described as a dark sedan.

Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office spokesman Al Della Fave said “the teen was thrown onto the windshield over the hood, where she was carried on the car for a time before being thrown off.”

Della Fave adds “the vehicle’s driver callously continued driving after the impact, carrying the victim on the vehicle hood for a distance before she was thrown free of the vehicle.”

26-year-old Brittany Keifer was arrested later that night on charges of assault by auto and leaving the scene of an accident that caused serious bodily injury. Officers found her car, which suffered extensive front end damage, hidden under a tarp outside of her home. Due to changes in bail reform laws, Keifer was released on a summons. This didn’t sit well with many on Facebook who voiced their displeasure with her release.

According to sources Jersey Shore Online cannot disclose, Keifer has a lawyer working on her case and all attempts to reach out for a comment have turned up dry.

Emma, an accomplished cheerleader, is supposed to start Point Pleasant Boro High School as a freshman this September. Her mother says “Emma’s ultimate goal is to get better and get out of the hospital. She hopes to start her journey of high school and hopes to be able to cheer again. For now, we need to concentrate on getting her better so we can try and make those things possible.”

Emma-Mae (Photo courtesy Stephane Gnolfo)

Emma’s mother, who is a single mom, said “that phone call is the worst call any parent can ever get. Today, for the first time, I was able to finally bring myself to look at the GoFundMe page. I am just so overwhelmed by the love and support we have had. Also, how the community has come together tremendously to help a little girl that they didn’t even know. It just fills my heart knowing how loved Emma is and it means so much to us. There are no words for me to even come close to expressing my gratitude.”

If you would like to make a donation to the GoFundMe page, click here.

Jennifer Peacock Contributed To This Report