BOSTON — A Connecticut woman mauled by her friend’s chimpanzee is suing the state for $150 million.
Every day is training day for 58-year-old Charla Nash, who’s working with a team of therapists at a rehabilitation facility outside of Boston.
“I don’t want anyone to feel sorry for me. I want to be like, you know, everyone else,” said Nash, in an interview with WABC in New York.
It’s been a long road. In 2009, her friend’s 200-pound pet chimpanzee ripped off her nose, lips, eyelids and hands in an attack that almost cost her her life.
In May 2011, doctors at Brigham and Women’s Hospital gave Nash a transplanted donor face and donor hands. The hands were later removed due to complications. She now only has a thumb but gains more feeling in her new face every day.
“I feel sensations. I don’t feel any pain, just once in a while, like a nerve. I get a little shock, and you’re like, ‘Oh, my nerves are generating,'” said Nash. “I can feel my forehead. I can feel my cheek. I can feel … that’s an eyebrow.”
Nash said she remembers nothing of the attack but recalls being increasingly alarmed by the escalating aggression of Travis the chimp.
“I always thought that maybe Travis was going to hurt someone someday,” said Nash.
She believes authorities did, too, but still did nothing, even after the chimp ran amok in downtown Stamford, Conn., in 2003.
“One day at a time. That’s all you can do. I’m glad I’m still here,” said Nash.