Akron grandmother speaks out after being struck in hit-skip accident

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AKRON, Ohio - Months after she was the victim of a hit-and-run crash in Akron, Doshie Gulley continues to adjust to the permanent consequences of that crash.

Gulley, 72, was retired from her job with the Summit County Board of Developmental Disability but remained very active.

She worked assisting people with independent living skills, loved travelling and pampering her youngest grandchildren.

"Sometimes my kids would ask, 'where are you at? Where have you been?' Because they couldn't catch up with me," said Gulley.

All of that changed on January 19, 2017.

Gulley was on her way home from a hair appointment when Deprise Moore, 36, ran a stop sign on East Archwood Avenue travelling well over the posted speed limit of 35mph.

The collision with Gulley's vehicle sent her spinning into a utility pole.

The Cadillac SUV Moore was driving toppled on its side.

Moore somehow was able to get out and ran from the scene.

"He just had no kind of feelings, no compassion at all for me and he lied about it and then ran, I mean his car flipped over and he jumped out of that and he started running," said Gulley.

She was left with very serious injuries including a severed spine.

Gulley says she cannot even remember when she was first told that she would never walk again. Though she survived, she says her life has changed forever.

"I have my bad days when it's like what I call it, I have those days when I feel sorry for myself you know, I just have them," she added.

Moore eventually turned himself in and on Tuesday, one day before his trial was supposed to begin, he pleaded guilty to charges that include vehicular assault, hit skip and driving under suspension.

Gulley, who expected to testify at the trial, says she is relieved.

"People say, 'what would you do if you saw him?' I say, 'just wake up, guy,' shake him up, say 'what the hell is going on here;  look what you did to me, look at how you really destroyed my life.' He sentenced me to a wheelchair for the rest of my life."

Adding heartache to her own challenges, Gulley lost her oldest daughter, Doshella, who suffered a heart attack after learning what happened to her mother and died.

"It was gut-wrenching; it was just gut-wrenching because I could not go to the funeral. They wouldn't permit me to go. I was still going to the doctor on a gurney."

Gulley says she continues to struggle with her emotions.

She has had to spend much of her own money doing what she can to make her home functional for herself in a wheelchair and has nursing assistance twice a day, seven days a week.

"We did a lot of modifications to the house, and I'm not talking about painting,  I'm talking about flooring and the lift and different things in the kitchen for them to be accessible to me," she said.

What has helped sustain her through the difficult months since the crash has been the support of co-workers, friends and her family.

"It affected everybody, not just my family, but the community itself; his family, I'm sure they are going through it as well because it was just reckless," said her daughter, Jennifer Walker.

Walker has worn the only one of her mother's hoop earrings that was found after the crash as a symbol of her resolve for Moore to be held responsible for what he caused.

Walker says she was at work on Tuesday when she learned that Moore pleaded guilty to the charges.

"I screamed and everybody came running, thinking that something had happened but I was very, very, very happy that he went on and plead guilty because I was very concerned about my mother being up there testifying," said Walker.

Moore is scheduled to be sentenced in November, when he could get as much as six-and-a-half years in prison.

Walker says from the experience she has learned not to take anything for granted because life can change in an instant.

"Keep your faith in God because I'm going to tell you, that's the only thing that sustained me through this is knowing he's going to perfect those things that concern me," said Walker.​

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