Angelia’s Story

“The most important thing that RIM did was give me confidence. I felt ugly and was upset by the way people would look at me.  But they helped me get past all of that. They helped me heal on the outside and in.”  – Angelia Bullard

Nail tech Angelia Bullard was burned over one-third of her body when she passed by a lit candle while carrying a tray of acetone. She struggled with the way people reacted to her appearance because of her burns, but RIM helped her regain her confidence. Now Angelia speaks to RIM’s burn support group monthly to help other burn victims do the same.

“I didn’t know anything was wrong until my client said my hair and uniform were on fire,” says Angelia.

“I dropped the dish of acetone and the whole room and me went up in flames.”

Angelia rushed to get clients and her coworkers out of the shop. She felt guilty that she caused an accident and wanted to make sure everyone made it out safely, even stopping to help people get their purses.

“I was the last one out the door,” she says. “I had no idea how serious my burns were until I got outside. They were on a third of my body – my face, chest, arms, hands and feet.”

Angelia spent two and half weeks in the hospital on a trach, disoriented and unable to walk or talk. From there she was transferred to RIM where therapists managed her pain, helped her burns heal and got her walking and talking again.

“The most important thing that RIM did was give me confidence,” says Angelia. “I felt ugly and was upset by the way people would look at me.  But they helped me get past all of that. They helped me heal on the outside and in.”

Now Angelia gives back to the community that helped her, speaking to RIM’s burn support group each month. She talks with burn patients and tells them life is going to be different, but different isn’t bad.

“If you look different, a lot of times people aren’t as accepting of you, but God made this happen to me for a reason,” says Angelia.

“I thank him for giving me the best doctors, my family and strength to get through this.”