Extra Effort: Holly McDonald Making Best of Difficult School Year That Included Serious Car Accident

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EUREKA, ILL. (WMBD/WYZZ) — Holly McDonald is proud of her team’s volleyball season.

She’s also proud of the things she does at Eureka High School outside of volleyball, like when she made masks as part of her role in Key Club this year. And then helped give those masks away.

“We bought cloth from the store along with other materials. We put them together after school,” McDonald said. “It was a great project to do.”

She hits volleyballs and helped her team to an 11-2 record this spring season.

McDonald also hits the books. A straight-A student, she’s a member of the National Honor Society.

“It’s definitely hard work but very rewarding,” McDonald said of juggling sports with keeping a perfect grade point average. “I feel like I’ve worked hard these past three years. Where I’m at now, I’m happy with it.”

But her junior year got off to a difficult start. McDonald was in a car accident gong to school one morning in September.

Her car was rear-ended in a construction zone along Route 117.

“I kind of got sandwhiched between two cars,” McDonald said. “They think my head hit the steering wheel.”

Her car was totaled and she suffered a concussion. She needed emergency surgery to repair broken bones in her cheek, nose and around her eye.

And while she was in the hospital, doctors notice a birth defect with her kidneys and she underwent a surgery to repair that issue. McDonald has two more surgeries scheduled for later in the year.

Yet she says this school year has been her most memorable and rewarding of her life.

“My most impactful year of high school. I feel like it’s the year I grew the most because I had so many adversities, so many things holding me back,” McDonald said. “It gives me a new appreciation for life and for everything.”

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