GEORGE TOWN - Nurse Janice Chuah Chai Ming was comatose for almost two years with doctors even wanting to pronounce her dead initially.
But her loving aunt Chuah Bee Hong would not give up on her, quitting her job as a cleaner to nurse her niece until she woke up recently.
Thanks to her aunt, the 30-year-old is now able to nod her head, make sounds and move her hands and legs since a year ago while recuperating at her home here.
She still cannot talk as doctors had performed surgery on her throat before.
Bee Hong, 50, said Janice was comatose for about two years before she started to move her eyelids about a year ago.
Janice had a bright future when she secured her dream job in Singapore three years ago.
But a hit-and-run accident robbed her of the chance and left her in a vegetative state.
Her aunt told Guang Ming Daily that she would never give up on Janice despite her condition, adding that she treated her like a daughter.
"I just hope one day she will be able to sit up. That's my wish.
"I am now happy to see her progressing well. Life has never been kind to her. Her parents broke up and left her under my care when she was three.
"But she always shows great determination in life. She had wanted to give me good life when she got a job in Singapore.
"But an accident just days before her trip to Singapore took it all away," Guang Ming Daily quoted her as saying.
Recalling the fateful day on March 13, 2012, Bee Hong claimed a doctor had even pronounced Janice dead as she sustained serious head and brain injuries.
She was riding a motorcycle to work before a car hit her from behind at about 7.30am in Gelugor. Voluntary patrol unit members found her slumped by the roadside before alerting the ambulance.
"My whole world came crashing down when the doctors told me they had lost her.
"But I did not give up. I kept shouting out her name before she moved her fingers. It was then the doctors performed surgery on her," she said.
Bee Hong said Janice had been slowly regaining her senses, as she could be seen in tears and smiling at times.
"But she would feel insecure whenever we were not around. She would cry and make noise.
"She would hold on to our hands tightly. She has become the "alarm clock" for my other daughter. She will shout out at her everyday at 6am to go to school."
Although Bee Hong was told that Janice would never recover fully, she said she would never abandon her niece.
"I will always sleep by her side.
"No matter what, I will care for her. She was such an angel before she met with the accident.
"I always believe that she will pull through all this one day."