Doris Quigley, the 17-year-old daughter of East Hampton Town Deputy Supervisor Theresa Quigley, is showing signs of good progress as she recovers from surgery after two days ago.
"This afternoon Doris made a breakthrough as she wiggled her toes ever so slightly on her right side," said Doris' older sister Sally Quigley said in an email on Thursday evening. "The doctor cannot say with how much she will progress, but the fact that there is movement this early is a very promising sign."
Following the accident, she was flown to Stony Brook University Medical Center, where she underwent a three-hour surgery on Wednesday evening.
Doctors expects her to be in intensive care for about a week, and then spend several months in a rehabilitation center, her sister said. "We are confident in her ability to recover because she is a yogi, swimmer, athlete, and positive person, and because of all of the support of this wonderful community. We ask that you keep her in your thoughts and prayers."
A rising junior at , Doris was working as an East Hampton Town lifeguard for the summer, and was taking a dip before ending the day, according to John Ryan Jr., the chief lifeguard.
He said it isn't clear how Quigley broke her neck in the surf. Friends and fellow lifeguards pulled her out of the water and quickly got her medical attention at around 4 p.m. Medical professionals happened to be on the beach and assisted lifeguards as EMTs arrived on scene.
Doris is the youngest of five children. Sally said her brother Roger drove down from college in Ithaca to be with his parents and siblings Sally, Helen and Joseph at Doris' bedside.
Supervisor Bill Wilkinson delivered cards and a framed photograph from Doris' fellow lifeguards to the hospital on Thursday afternoon. "She looked great," Wilkinson said, adding that Doris even flipped through one of the cards.