Posted by: calloftheandes | March 7, 2011

Rosita Runs Again Despite Snakebite Injury in Ecuadorian Jungle

The lifeless muscles held just one result for Rosita, a 9-year-old snakebite victim from Ecuador’s Amazon region—she would lose her leg.

“She had come too late,” wrote HCJB Global Hands physician Eckehart Wolff. “The muscles of the leg had already died, and we had to amputate it to save her life.” A missionary surgeon, Wolff performed the operation at Hospital Vozandes-Shell about 18 months ago.

Rosita’s medical crisis changed her family’s lifestyle. They left their home and fields in the rainforest and began living in the custodian’s quarters at a school near Shell. The family has started a new life with Rosita using crutches to limp around on one leg in the schoolyard.

Somehow, Rosita was overlooked by a comprehensive campaign by Ecuador’s government to help the nation’s disabled. (Her home province, Pastaza, was not among the first eight provinces helped.)

Ecuadorian Vice President Lenín Moreno (who is wheelchair bound) announced in February that a governmental effort called Manuela Espejo Solidarity Mission would continue identifying the disabled with a view of helping 290,000 people with disabilities.

In addition, the government has announced monthly disability payments for 14,479 Ecuadorians who qualify with plans to construct up to 3,000 homes for the neediest of these. When attempts to get a prosthesis for Rosita failed, however, she and her family returned to talk with Wolff who referred them to help in Quito.

“We found them a hostel where they could stay and put her brother in touch with a foundation that agreed to make a prosthesis for Rosita,” said Wolff. “After three weeks everything was adjusted. The physical therapist showed Rosita how to walk.” Soon enough, the crutches were stored at home, only for emergency use.

“Two weeks later, she is running about with other children in the schoolyard,” said Wolff.

Sources: HCJB Global, El Comercio, El Ciudadano


  1. […] completing language school in December 1986, Clayton went directly to Ecuador to begin her work at Hospital Vozandes-Shell (also known as Hospital Vozandes del Oriente or HVO), quickly fitting into the local […]

  2. We just want to acknowledge the deeply moving and beautiful Story of Rosita -how gracious and kind of so many. Although we do not know Dr. Wolf, we did know so many of the medical staff there in Ecuador–we were honored to be dorm parents and care for the children of both Dr. Ev and Liz Fuller, Dr. Art and Verna Johnson, and Dr. Wally and Char Swanson, all many, many years ago and we have known many other medical staff as they provide continuing care of love for so many of God’s special people down in Shell. Reading this article filled our hearts with thanksgiving–for Shell and HCJB, of course, but also for Ecuador and the kindness of the Vice President and the people reaching out to those in such dire need. And above all, for our Lord and Savior who will never leave nor forsake His people. David and Kay Landers

  3. This is an inspirational story…but did anything change for Rosita and her family spiritually as well?

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