PASS CHRISTIAN -- Mary Springer, Pass Christian's beloved "bike lady," said she is still trying to piece together the events of Feb. 7 -- the day of the St. Paul Carnival Association Mardi Gras parade.
She was hit by a vehicle as she rode her bicycle on East Second Street, something she had done nearly every day for years.
An ambulance took Springer, 73, to Memorial Hospital at Gulfport. She received six stitches in her head and was treated for a lacerated shoulder and nine fractured ribs.
A new bike
But three months later, the bike lady is back on two wheels, proudly riding her brand-new bicycle across the Pass.
"I bought myself a new bike because my old bike was beyond repair," she said. "I bought it about a month ago because I needed it as inspiration."
Springer said she needed the new bike's additional motivation because her recovery was complicated.
"I developed vertigo from the injuries to my head and it took me a little longer than I thought to get better," she said. "But I learned at an early age how to develop patience, so I just waited until I got better."
She also had issues such as bursitis and tendonitis.
"I had some things happen while I was recovering, but the good news is that my ribs healed pretty quickly," she said. "My doctor said that's because I have stayed active."
Back on the road
She is once again able to pursue her passion for cycling. But Springer said she is still taking it easy.
"I have been on my bike three times so far and I've loved it," she said. "But East Second Street is a really busy road and I'm trying to find some alternate routes."
She said she is also emphasizing safety gear.
"I'm now wearing a helmet and a vest and I encourage everyone who rides bikes, especially younger children, to get a helmet and reflective vest."
She said the people of Pass Christian played a big role in her recovery.
"The support I received has been unbelievable -- people in the community sent me cards and brought me food and even came over and played games and dominoes with me and most importantly, they prayed for me," she said. "I love this little small town."