DENVER - Former Jefferson County elementary school teacher and Grace Community Church Children's Ministry teacher, Danielle Jenson, seriously injured in a bus crash April 15 while teaching in Africa, is recovering quickly according to relatives.
"Danielle ... has been awake and talking and the doctors have been encouraged and amazed at the speed of her recovery," Jenson's Aunt, Margaret O'Conner wrote in a recent update.
Unfortunately, although Jenson's progress has been steady, there have also been set backs.
"Monday she was extubated and her breathing has been very labored and her lungs have had difficulty coping. She has also developed a fever," O'Conner wrote. "Her lungs were improving steadily on the ventilator, but started to deteriorate according to [Wednesday's] chest x-rays. [Danielle's doctor] decided ... she needs the ventilator put back in to give Dani's lungs enough time to heal."
Jenson, always dreamed of teaching in Africa. However, her dreams were cut short when a bus she and several orphans were taking on a field trip to a lake in Malawi got a flat tire.
According to Grace Community Church Pastor, Terry Broadwater, Danielle was thrown out of a window on the ten-seat bus as it flipped over five times.
Jenson had to be airlifted from the scene of the crash.
Jensen began teaching in the Southeast African country of Malawi in August of 2013 after several years of service at her church.
"Danielle served as a teacher, and really as a director, over the fourth and fifth graders for four or five years before she went over to Africa to teach," Broadwater told 9NEWS in an interview. "She made a significant impact on our children's ministries."
According to Jenson's father, she had always had an interest in working with children in Africa.
"She always had a heart for Africa, she had taken a few trips there even when she was in high school," said in an interview. "About a year ago she started looking for opportunities to teach over there."
After a semester teaching writing in Jefferson County schools, Danielle got an opportunity to fulfill her dream at African Bible College.
"They actually have an academy there where they teach children from the local villagers," Dan Jenson said. "She signed up to do it a year last spring, and they left in August to spend this whole year over there.
Prior to the accident Jenson decided she wanted to continue her efforts.
"She signed up for another year and they were due to come back to the United States in June," Dan Jenson said.
Dan Jenson says doctors estimate it will be at least two weeks until Jenson can come home to Centennial.
Her recovery page can be found at: https://www.giveforward.com/fundraiser/13g4/danielle-jenson-recovery-fund