Kechi Okwuchi, the Nigerian-American singer and motivational speaker, has shared her tremendous journey to recovery from the facial scars sustained after the tragic Sosoliso plane crash that occurred nearly 16 years ago.
The America Got Talent star was one of the two survivors in the Sosoliso Airlines Flight 1145 crash on December 10, 2005.
She had suffered third-degree burns on 65% of her body, undergone over a hundred reconstructive surgeries, and was given a 30% chance of survival.
But on Tuesday, Okwuchi took to her Instagram page to express gratitude to God while also sharing two photos of her facial scars and the healing progress spanning 14 years — from January 30, 2007, to July 20, 2021.
“Wonder if I should tag this as sensitive content? I stumbled upon the picture on the left on my laptop a couple of months ago, and I have been contemplating this post since then,” she wrote.
“I remember I stared at it for a long time that day. Time makes me forget just how extensive my burn injuries were, and how devastating the effects were to my body.
“The pic on the left was taken a good year after the plane crash and by then, intense scar tissue had formed, especially on my face.
“I took the pic on the right a few mins ago and made these before/afters, and I marvel at how far God has brought me.
“I am the result of the hard work of multiple surgeons He brought into my life, nurses, physiotherapists, and love and care from my family, my mom especially.
“This is what progress looks like, guys. 2 pictures, 14 years apart. I’m grateful that I lived long enough to see it.”
Okwuchi also used the opportunity to let others going through her condition know that “true progress, genuine growth, and lasting change cannot happen overnight.”
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“Most of the time during the journey, maybe like me, you won’t notice changes because day by day they’re too minuscule to make a difference,” she added.
“But if you give yourself a fighting chance, if you find the right kind of support on your journey, one day, definitely one day, you will look back like I did this morning and hopefully…you will smile.
“I heard this in a song and it stuck with me: The night will definitely come. But so will the morning,”
The Sosoliso Flight 1145, which took off from Abuja, crash-landed at Port Harcourt International Airport – its destination — with 110 people on board. There were only two survivors out of the 103 passengers and 7 crew members.
Among the passengers were about sixty secondary school students from Loyola Jesuit College in Abuja.
Okwuchi has continued to pull the strings since the plane crash which dominated discussions across the globe at the time.
In 2015, she graduated with a first-class from the University of Saint Thomas in Houston, Texas. She also emerged as a finalist at the 12th edition of the America’s Got Talent show two years later.
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