Lisa Brunet was just an ordinary University of North Texas student enjoying a night on the downtown Square when she was struck by a speeding truck while walking to her car.
Since that night in June, Brunet’s life has been anything but ordinary. Broken bones are still healing, and thousands of dollars worth of medical bills continue to pile up.
That’s why Amanda Sonnier, president of the Denton Swing Dance Organization, said she is helping host a fundraiser in conjunction with the College of Visual Arts and Design on the UNT campus Saturday night.
Doors will open at 7:15 p.m. for the fundraiser in the Lightwell Gallery at the UNT Art Building, 1201 W. Mulberry St.
“She just has astronomical bills that keep coming in,” Sonnier said of Brunet. “Lisa was part of our family, and we will keep putting on fundraisers until she gets to dancing again.”
Tickets cost $10, and swing dance lessons will be offered from 8 to 9 p.m. with an open dance from 9 p.m. to midnight.
“All proceeds will go directly to Lisa,” Sonnier said.
Brunet came to Texas from New York to major in communication design at UNT, and shortly after enrollment, she started swing-dancing with the club.
At 33, she said she worked as a model before deciding exactly what it was she wanted to do with her life.
“God wanted me here right now and I don’t know why,” Brunet said when asked why she felt like Denton was the place to call home.
For now, Brunet is just taking one political science class in her third semester at UNT as she recovers from the injuries she suffered in the hit-and-run accident at about 9:40 p.m. June 27.
She suffered a fractured pelvis, a broken right tibia, breaks in her right shoulder and humerus, a smashed right fibula, four fractured vertebrae and a fractured right shoulder blade.
“I spent three weeks in the hospital and then a month in a nursing home in Lewisville,” Brunet said.
Many have told her throughout her recovery that she is lucky to have survived.
Denton police said Brunet was crossing Locust Street near the Courthouse on the Square when she was struck by a black pickup or SUV in the left lane.
“The vehicle did not stop and fled the scene,” Ryan Grelle, spokesman for Denton police, said after the accident.
Grelle said the vehicle may have sustained damage to the front or left side, but no leads have been reported since the accident occurred. Anyone who has any information about the accident should call Officer Gary Craig at 940-349-7977.
Those who can’t attend Saturday’s fundraiser can mail a check payable to Lisa Brunet in an envelope addressed to: Lisa Brunet, Community Bank of the Bay, 390 Railroad Ave., Suite 101, Danville, CA 94526. Contributions can also be made online at www.gofundme.com/3s14qw.
“Right now, I am just overwhelmed by the support from everyone all over the country — from my old co-workers to neighbors back where I grew up in California,” Brunet said. “It’s a blessing how helpful everyone is; I am truly being watched over.”
MEGAN GRAY can be reached at 940-566-6885 and via Twitter at @MGrayNews.