Woman mauled by bear has long road to recovery


by Stacey Delikat


Posted on July 5, 2011 at 6:38 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 6 at 7:04 PM

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - The Gilbert woman mauled by a black bear last week remains in the intensive care unit and continues to undergo surgeries to repair her skull and badly injured arms.

Lana Hollingsworth's son, Robert Goates, says she's making slow progress but remains in a medically-induced coma as doctors work on her injuries.

"Everyday is progress, one because she's still with us and two her vital signs are stable, but you know people think, progress, oh she's better...no she's far from that, she'll never be 100 percent, ever again," he said.

Goates says the bear "scalped" his mother, tearing off her skull all the way down to the back of her neck. He says her arms were severely injured and sustained nerve damage.

"Her arms are the worst part of it all, her right arm is just missing big chunks and really cut up a lot and her left arm, there's nerve damage," Coates said.

The good news, says Coates, is that Hollingsworth's face remains intact.

Hollingsworth, 61, was walking her dog outside of her Pinetop vacation home last Tuesday night when the bear attacked her.

Dogs were brought in to track the animal and quickly encountered a bear within a couple hundred yards of the site. The bear was immediately killed. 

Results of DNA testing confirmed that the bear was the one responsible for the attack. A rabies test carried out by the Arizona Department of Health Services came back negative.

It was presumed the bear was startled and protecting the trash it had been scavenging. 

Hollingsworth is being treated at Scottsdale Healthcare Osborne Medical Center and is expected to undergo a seventh surgery on Wednesday.

Community members have organized fundraisers to help her family pay for her medical expenses. 

On Friday and Saturday a group of businesses at 3651 E. Baseline Road in Gilbert will host a fundraiser and donate a portion of their profits to Hollingsworth's fund.

On Thursday Costa Vita Mexican Restaurants in Mesa and Queen Creek will donate a portion of their proceeds to Hollingsworth. Two Hippies Beachhouse st 1245 W. Baseline Road in Mesa will do the same.

For more visit www.LoveforLana.org.