TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Dominique Landreville had her whole life ahead of her as a fresh high school graduate.
She's a bubbly girl, who loves to read and listen to music, and dreams of becoming a massage therapist. The future of her life changed course the night of November 6, 2013.
"I don't know what happened, but he veered off and hit me," she explained in an exclusive interview with Tucson News Now. "Why? Why did this happen to me?" she asked, recounting the night her family won't forget.
It's been nearly five years since she was hit by a car off of Oracle and Orange Grove in Tucson.
TNN was told the driver may have been fumbling with their radio.
Landreville was walking alongside the road to get home after a late night at work.
"She had taken over somebody else's shift, so she didn't know that she would be going late at night. She had nothing reflective on. No flashlight or anything," her dad, James Landreville, said.
It was a walk that should have taken her three minutes to do and later became the biggest setback of her life.
"They didn't expect her to live," her dad said. "You end up doing everything you can to try and get her to a complete recovery."
Her family was told to say their goodbyes. Dominique spent two years in a coma.
For months, her dad drove 14 hours to a rehab gym in Denver, even when she wasn't conscious for therapy.
Finally, she woke up.
"We did some pretty crazy things to try and get her to wake up. It worked, eventually. She starting waking up and getting better and better," he said.
She had to start all over. That meant learning to stand again, and used a walker to get around. It became a crutch her dad said she was afraid to lose.
"She wouldn't let go of her walker. When we asked her why, she said I'm afraid if I fall, I'll hit my head and I'll die."
The sky was the limit, though. She had a different life-changing experience. Her dad took her sky-diving, changing that fearful attitude to fearless.
"The very next morning, she let go of the walker and started walking," he said. It was a surreal moment for her family, one that they're thankful for.
Dominique is happy to know how far she has come, "Thank god I'm not there anymore. I'm smiling all the time. Not all the time, but most of the time. I'm just happy."
Yet today, there are still challenges. The recovery process continues. Stem cell and hyperbaric treatments are helping her to get her speech back.
Dominqiue's positive outlook on life gets her through each day, with the help of family, especially her dad. "I couldn't have even made it without him. I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for him."
She wants her story to serve as a reminder to people and drivers everywhere. "Pay attention to your surroundings, pay attention to where you're going," she said, hoping accidents like hers can hopefully be avoided.
There's a GoFundMe page set up for Dominique's family: https://www.gofundme.com/DominiquesFund