Flying high for 30 years as a flight attendant with Continental Airlines, Glenda Pogue's life came crashing down in mid-June. It started with an urgent phone call to one of her sister's in Prattville.
"She said her throat was swelling and she couldn't breathe," said Marie Stanfield.
Stricken in Houston, Texas, Pogue went to the emergency room. First, the wrong diagnosis.
"They looked at her and said she was having an allergic reaction and let her go home," Stanfield recalled.
And then later, the truth.
"She was holding her neck. She couldn't breathe. She went into cardiac arrest. The disease is Necrotizing fascitis," said Stanfield.
In short, flesh-eating bacteria and since June 11th, it's been one struggle after another for Glenda Pogue.
"Two-thirds of her tongue was removed because the bacteria was in the throat and then it went down her arms. Of all the drama she's gone through, she developed septic shock and blood clots during surgery," said Stanfield.
To prevent further damage, doctors had no choice but to remove Glenda's finger tips down to the first knuckle on her right hand. They've already done reconstructive surgery on her tongue. The biggest concern now is fluid in her lungs and yet through it all, Glenda's family believes a higher power has been with them since day one.
"The fact that she's still here He performed a miracle. We believe she will make it," said Stanfield.
While they're counting on another miracle for a full recovery, Carol Murphy is stepping in with the 'Benefit Ride to Recovery,' motorcyclists coming together to raise cash to reduce Glenda's mounting medical bills. The journey begins at Safe Harbor Assembly Church of God in Prattville and meander some 80 miles through the Alabama countryside.
"It'll be $15 for single riders and $20 for doubles. We hope to raise at least $5,000," said Murphy who is spearheading the fundraiser.
Murphy went to high school with Pogue but hasn't seen her classmate in 30 years.
"She's one of us. It could have been one of us to get sick," Murphy said.
"We've got some wonderful people supporting us," said Stanfield.
Some of those people like Carol Murphy are trying to make a difference with a motorcycle ride fundraiser. Glenda Pogue for one has done her part.. not giving up the fight to live.
The benefit ride is set for Saturday, August 15 with registration beginning at 8:30 in the morning for riders.
A little background on Necrotizing fascitis. It's a rare infection and it often destroys skin and tissues. It's life-threatening and it's not clear how Pogue may have contracted the disease. Surgery is always necessary to remove dead tissue.