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Student injured in crash in critical condition

This story has been updated at 2:00 p.m., May 16, 2012.

Boston University junior Margaret “Meg” Theriault remains in critical condition as of Tuesday afternoon New Zealand time, according to hospital officials.

Theriault is in a medically induced coma following brain surgery Saturday, said Terri Killam, Theriault’s aunt.

“She had brain surgery and they stabilized her from that and put her right arm in place [which was broken],” Killam said. “Her parents are there, but she is still in an induced coma.”

Theriault was seriously injured and airlifted to the hospital after the car accident Saturday morning in Turangi, New Zealand that killed three and injured five students, according to BU spokesman Colin Riley in an interview with The Daily Free Press Saturday.

Theriault suffered head injuries, a broken arm and grazing to her body, her parents Todd and Deb Theriault of Boston said in a hospital statement.

“She is a fit and stubborn young woman and we know she is getting the best care,” her parents said in the statement.

Theriault was in the vehicle, carrying eight BU students vacationing in New Zealand during their study abroad program, that drifted off the road and proceeded to roll over when the driver corrected for the swerve.

“The emergency services people and the police did an outstanding job given the nature of the accident,” Theriault’s parents said.

Todd and Deb Theriault flew to Waikato Hospital in New Zealand to be with their daughter during this time.

“We’re here now and we’re supporting our daughter for as long as it takes,” they said.

Theriault, 21, is a junior studying business management in the School of Management. She has been interning in Sydney during the Spring 2012 semester, but traveled to New Zealand for vacation before planning to return to the United States later this month.

“It’s a matter of time now,” her parents said in the statement. “We’d be grateful if you could respect our privacy while we spend time with our daughter and help her to recover.”

Theriault’s parents are assured their daughter is in good care in Waikato Hospital and are thinking of the families of those who died in the crash.

“Firstly our thoughts and prayers are with those families who have lost loved ones in the accident,” the Theriaults stated. “We know what they are going through and what it’s like to receive such devastating news from the other side of the world.”

Killam said she is unsure as to how long Meg will be in a coma.

“No news is good news, but no news is not good enough,” she said. “We’re all just praying and hoping.”

Alys McAlpine was discharged from Rotorua Hospital Wednesday, said Director of the Auckland Study Abroad program Kevin Martin. Another 21-year-old woman has also been discharged from there.

The two 20-year-old students, a man and a woman who were brought to Taupo Hospital were treated and discharged quickly.

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