Italian footballing legend and former Roma captain Francesco Totti has visited Ilenia Mellili, the girl who woke up from a coma after listening to a video messages sent by the soccer star.
The 19-year old has been in hospital since December after a car crash which also killed her best friend. After a request by her parents, Totti sent a video message to the girl, saying: “Hold on and don’t give up.”
After hearing his voice, Ilenia gave further signs of recovery and wrote on a special blackboard that she wanted to meet her idol.
Totti and Ilenia spent an hour together, the Gemelli hospital said in a statement. Although ironically the girl played for Lazio (who happen to be Roma’s rivals) women’s team. she welcomed the star wearing a Roma T-shirt.
“I want to see you out of the hospital soon and get your life back,” Totti said.
Doctor Luca Padua, who leads the neurorehabilitation unit, said that listening to music, sounds and looking at images were an important part of Ilenia’s therapy.
“There is still a long way forward, but we are confident,” Padua said.
Former Italy international Totti played more than 600 games and is a living legend, still much loved in the Italian capital.