Curler overcomes 'cowardly' action

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 7:18 AM ET

Lisa Roy has a message for the people -- or cowards, as she calls them -- who gave her permanent vision problems in her left eye.

"Grow a spine and step up and take responsibility for your actions," she said yesterday.

Roy, a 27-year-old Morden resident, is the third on Kristy Jenion's St. Vital rink, an up-and-coming squad that lost last year's provincial women's curling final to eventual national champ Jennifer Jones.

The Jenion rink is competing in the star-studded Casinos of Winnipeg Women's Curling Classic, which begins today at Fort Rouge Curling Club.

Roy, however, is lucky to be alive, let alone competing in a bonspiel after what happened on Hwy. 3 just before midnight on Aug. 3.

Roy, who teaches Grade 7 at Ecole Morden Middle School, was driving home from Winnipeg, where she had been working out with the team's trainer. She was approaching Carman, going about 100 km/h, when someone in a vehicle travelling in the opposite direction tossed a full, two-litre plastic pop bottle at her car.

The results were devastating.

The bottom of the bottle struck her windshield, shattering it. Shards and larger pieces of glass went everywhere, including in her eyes. She slammed on the brakes just as her vehicle was about to veer into the ditch on the south side of the road.

She was able to find her cellphone and dial 911. She was taken to Carman Hospital, where doctors tried to remove the nearly invisible pieces of glass from her eye.

"I had a CT scan to check for glass in the eye, and they were pulling it out even after the CT scan read that there was nothing left," she said. "I could feel it."

Her lower eyelid was lacerated in two places. She had cuts on her forehead and nose. The tear duct in her left eye was also severed.

Her plastic surgeon did an "amazing job" fixing up the lacerations. She also had a plastic tube inserted to serve as the tear duct, which will take a year to heal.

Unfortunately, her doctors couldn't do anything about her blurry direct vision in her left eye. Her peripheral vision is fine.

"I tell people it's kind of compared to that drinking and driving commercial with the glasses," she said. "Just put a few more glasses on there."

Roy and her doctors were hoping that her vision would improve over time, but it hasn't, and she was told last week that nothing more can be done.

"I'm seeking a second opinion, because you never know," she said. "It's kind of devastating when you hear something like that."

Her right eye wasn't injured, so it compensates for the left one. But her eyes hurt when she's tired or when it's bright, because the pupil in her left eye is permanently fixed and dilated.

"To go from having perfect vision to having what I've got now is an adjustment," she said.

No arrests have been made, but Roy is hoping publicity like this will result in some.

"They're stupid," she said of her attackers. "... They're cowardly for not stepping forward."

Anyone with information is asked to contact Carman RCMP.

CLASSIC TIDBITS: The Casinos of Winnipeg Classic is a triple knockout event featuring 32 teams, including reigning world champion Anette Norberg of Sweden and Jennifer Jones ... The purse is $45,000, with $14,000 going to the winner ... The first draw is this morning at 8:30. The final goes Monday at 5 p.m.


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