‘I feel blessed to be alive!’


University of Cape Town student and model Aurora Marcopoulos (19) from Hout Bay survived the odds in a crash that has left many, including her, dumbfounded.

She flew off a cliff and crash-landed her mother’s Jaguar in rocks at Bakoven near Camps Bay on her way home to Hout Bay after dropping off some friends in Long Street on Saturday 11 May.

Questions remain unanswered as Aurora fails to recall exactly what happened on that fateful night. She was found the following morning at 7 am, about five hours after the crash occurred.

She says, “I do not remember a thing from when I dropped my friends in Long Street till a few days after the accident.”

Did she fall asleep? Were her drinks spiked? Did someone see the crash, take her belongings and leave her there to die?

There are so many questions surrounding the mysterious accident that could so easily have claimed Aurora’s life.

“My watch and jewellery, my handbag with everything in it [were missing]; my shoes from my feet were also missing as well as a second pair I had in the car.”

A full-time media and politics student at UCT and a part-time model at 20 Management, Aurora says her last memory is of dropping off her friends. Everything else it seems remains a mystery. Had she fallen asleep? “I don’t know,” she says.

She says her blood was tested and the results came back negative for alcohol and drugs. “I don't drink when I'm planning on driving. I hadn't been drinking for approximately two weeks [prior to] the day of the accident.” She did have an energy drink that night, but says, “I didn't put it down so I doubt anyone could have put something in it.

“Sometimes your brain blocks out traumatic events though. In future I may have trauma counselling which could possibly trigger some memory.”

The student, who should have been writing exams now, says she suffered a major concussion and severe bruising. “But it is a small price to pay considering. I feel really blessed to be alive and lucky to have so many supportive and loving people in my life.”

“I also broke seven ribs, fractured two of my vertebra and slipped a disc in my spine. I have to wear a brace for my ribs and back. I was hypothermic [abnormally low body temperature] when they found me and had some head trauma as well as very weak, infected lungs with the possibility of them collapsing. My lung was actually punctured.”

After having spent about a fortnight in hospital, Aurora says she’s grateful. “I have recovered faster than the doctors imagined and I am home after just over two weeks in hospital.”

-Faiza Mallick

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