Chimp Attack Victim Reveals New Face
It’s been two long, painful years since Charla Nash let just anyone gaze upon her face.
In 2009, Nash was attacked by her friend and former employer’s 15 year old chimpanzee, Travis, while visiting her home. When paramedics arrived, they found that Travis had ripped off Nash’s entire upper jaw and nose, and had chewed off Nash’s fingers, shredding both of her hands.
Surgeons patched up Nash best they could, removing both of her eyes and using a graft from her leg to replace enough of her nose to breathe properly.
In November of that same year, Nash visited the Oprah show, to discuss how her recovery was going, and revealed what was left of her mangled face, to a shocked Winfrey and audience. Up to that point, Nash had worn straw hats with veils sewn on to cover her face, largely to avoid responses from people seeing her for the first time.
Today marks the first time that Charla Nash has revealed to the public what her new face looks like. After two years without the most readily identifiable feature we all have, Nash finally has a face of her own again. She can now be recognized by something other than the deep physical and emotional scars she has privately borne for so long.
In late May of this year, Nash received a full face transplant, an extremely rare procedure, at Woman’s Hospital of Boston. A team of 30 doctors, nurses and anesthesiologists worked for 20 hours to perform the surgery - the third time it had been performed there.
Unemployed and still fighting for compensation for having been savaged by her former friend’s chimpanzee, Nash was unable to pay for the procedure. “These transplants could not have been possible without the generosity of a family unknown to me,” wrote Nash in a letter released today, along with a photo of her new face.Continued on the next page