BY VEENA RAO
GA, Oct 2012: A tragic accident two years ago killed her twin sister
Arpana, and left her in a wheelchair with severe spinal cord injury.
But with no medical insurance, it is the love of her family and the
support of the community has kept Archana Gambiraopet’s recovery going
“My twin daughters came to the USA for higher studies
(Masters in Chemistry). Both of them completed their masters and were
soon to graduate when a devastating accident took place on Nov 12th
2010,” said Archana’s father Ravinder Gambiraopet in an email sent to
this newspaper. “Arpana died the same day while Archana was left a
quadriplegic. She had no sensation below the shoulder level. But over
the months, with therapy, she has regained some movement in her upper
Gambiraopet and his wife Anitha have been intensively
involved in the day-to-day care of their daughter, as they grieve for
the one that did not make it. They have attended family training
lectures and hands on training with nurses and physical therapists in
order to learn how to care for Archana.
Archana and her family
moved to Atlanta recently after being treated at several neuro centers
in the US. The Neuro Recovery Network Program, the latest and most
advanced therapy for spinal cord injury is available only at seven
centers across the US and Shepherd Rehab Center, Atlanta is one among
them. Archana receives therapy there three times a week, costing an
average $300 a day for the treatment. The total cost of the treatment
is around $55,000, which the family does not have.
a bright student, and despite her disabilities, Archana went on to get
her master’s degree from Murray State University in Kentucky. The
university has named an award after the twin sisters, the “Arpana &
Archana Gambiraopet Campus Impact Award” to honor and appreciate the
positive impact the twin sisters had on others at the university.
Archana was the first recipient of this award for all round achievement
and for having played an active role in the advancement of diversity on
campus through her efforts. This award will be bestowed every year to a
student who inspires and impacts others.
“They have been equally
brilliant in studies and sports since their childhood,” said
Gambiraopet, of his girls. “Just before the accident, Archana and
Arpana assisted their research professor in preparation and publication
of a text book on "Global Contamination Trends of Persistent Organic
Chemicals" for which both girls received acknowledgements and laurels
from the professors and the president of Murray State University for
“We as parents cannot imagine a more deserving
honor than this. We are proud of our daughters for their perseverance
and sheer hard work through which they achieved so much in their young
Archana and Arpana were also star basketball players and
represented Andhra Pradesh in the National Basketball Championship and
won many laurels for AP. For this, they were awarded with a title of
"Twin Pearls of AP".
Gambiraopet appeals to the Georgia Indian
community to help with Archana’s treatment and recovery with generous
donations so that this bright young girl can go on to achieve greater
things in life and live her goals.
Visit www.helparchana.com to
find out how you can help or call Ravinder Gambiraopet at (270)
226-3242 or email him at email@example.com.