Kim McCusker, who was dragged under a taxi, dies ‘after 10 years of pain’

Kim McCusker, who was dragged under a taxi for 780m in 2011, has died. File image.
Kim McCusker, who was dragged under a taxi for 780m in 2011, has died. File image.
Image: Sunday Times

The Johannesburg woman who was caught under a taxi and dragged for 780m on her back a decade ago, Kim McCusker, has died at the age of 36.

Her sister, Julia Frantzeskou, shared on Facebook: “It is with great sadness that our family shares the news of Kim McCusker’s passing on April 22 2021. We are heartbroken and in disbelief as it is hard to imagine a world without our precious Kimmy who, among so many other things, was a loving daughter to Doug and Pat, a devoted partner to Anthony and an incredible sister to Gareth, Ian and me.

“I know she touched so many hearts and that the significance of this loss will be felt by all, including her family, friends, staff members and clients. We ask for space to grieve in this trying time, and will be sure to share the details of the funeral once these have been arranged,” her post read.

The cause of her death was not disclosed. 

McCusker, who qualified as an advocate, was severely injured in an altercation with a taxi driver in Lonehill on September 13 2011. 

Doctors at Fourways Life Hospital gave McCusker little chance of survival. Among other injuries, she had lost 58% of her skin, which was scraped off, exposing bone, ligaments and muscle. Her spinal vertebrae were fractured in seven places, as were both her legs.

In 2016, her book about the experience, Scarred — But Not For Life, was published.

In an interview with the Matt Brown Show last year, she revealed the taxi driver had not been brought to justice as he had absconded from the trial. However, she said she had released any anger towards him soon after the incident, saying: “I let go about anything towards him while I was still in hospital. It would have damaged me to hold on to anger.”

Her father Douglas McCusker told Huisgenoot magazine she had to take painkillers during the 10 years since the accident due to the lingering pain she endured.

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