LEWISTON — An Auburn woman injured last week when the car in which she was riding struck a moose on the Maine Turnpike remained in a coma Wednesday, according to her boyfriend.

Doctors had put Taylor Norcross, 27, in an induced coma because of a head injury sustained in the crash. Since then, they have gradually lessened the amount of sedatives that kept her in that state, Frank Gatto said. As of Wednesday, she was no longer being sedated, he said.

Gatto had been driving the 2004 Infinity sedan that struck a moose in the northbound lane in Gray on Nov. 4. He escaped uninjured. Norcross, who was in the front passenger seat, suffered a severe head injury as the moose tore the roof off the car on that side.

A spokeswoman at Central Maine Medical Center said Wednesday that Norcross’ condition continues to be listed as critical.

A tube used to reduce brain swelling and monitor her intracranial pressure was removed on Tuesday, Gatto said.

Doctors also discontinued pain medication in an effort to aid Norcross in coming out of her coma, according to Gatto.


“She hasn’t woken up yet,” he said Wednesday morning shortly before leaving for the hospital.

She is breathing on her own, but continues to have a breathing machine as backup, Gatto said.

Norcross has responded to touch and has started to move without physical stimulus, he said, moving her her hand or foot, “just a little bit.”

In a Facebook posting Wednesday afternoon, he reported that Norcross “is moving a lot. Her legs and left arm are very active, however, her right arm isn’t.”

Gatto said doctors have told him it’s difficult to determine, with her type of injury, “when things will happen and at what point she might wake up. There’s a possibility that she might never.”

Doctors have taken images of her brain and haven’t been able to point to any area that shows damage, Gatto said.


“It’s really hard to tell exactly what’s going on because it’s still pretty early in the injury,” he said.

A new MRI is scheduled for Thursday morning.

Now that the swelling has subsided, doctors should be able to better assess her medical condition, Gatto said.

Apart from a couple of scratches, Norcross sustained no external injuries nor spinal injuries, he said.

Gatto, 39, met Norcross, 27, four years ago when she was shopping for a car and he sold her one.

When their car struck the moose a week ago, Gatto remained conscious and tended to Norcross until emergency crews arrived.


Gatto said he draws strength through the outpouring of support from friends and family as well as through social media, especially Facebook, where he has been posting daily updates on Norcross’ medical status.

“I think that’s one of the things that helps me get through it a lot is being distracted by so many people caring,” he said.

A couple of friends established fundraising vehicles for Norcross, who lacked health care insurance at the time of the crash.

Strangers who have recognized him through news media have approached him to wish him and Norcross well, Gatto said.

Doctors have cautioned him and other hospital visitors that the least stimulation is best for Norcross.

“They want to keep things very calm and quiet,” he said. “As severe an injury as that is, it’s really important that we don’t bring in a lot of visitors. It’s been just immediate family and extremely close friends.

“We’re just keeping a positive outlook, hoping for the best,” he said. “That’s all we can do at this point. The rest is up to her. She’s got to wake up.”

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.