Dreams Deferred

Krystal Campbell, an SMU honor student on scholarship, hoped to teach courses in Shakespeare some day.

But on December 15, 1991, as she adjusted the heavy blinds on her dormitory’s 10-foot-high window, they came crashing down on her head, causing near-blindness for eight months, dizziness and, according to doctors, permanent double vision, numbness in one arm and incontinence.

She says she had complained about the blinds, which had fallen twice before, but college officials didn’t repair them. So Krystal spent much of last year being treated at Parkland Hospital. When she wasn’t at Parkland, she holed up in her apartment, feeling she was “no longer a member of the human race.”

Krystal was covered by the mandatory insurance policy all students carry, but the company refused to pay any of her bills because the accident occurred after the semester had ended. Though she consulted a lawyer, she has not filed suit. SMU officials declined to comment on the matter.

At this point Krystal doesn’t know whether she will go back to school-though she has no plans to return to SMU. Her vision has been corrected with prism glasses provided by a charitable doctor, but she says her other symptoms remain. “Nothing is going away but my life,” she says.

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