'Angels' in recovery


POSTED: Monday, May 04, 2009

She spent years swinging on the circus trapeze, traveling through Asia, Europe and the United States.

But a vehicle accident in Hawaii in December forced Mongolian acrobat Nyamchimeg Soodoi into a slow, arduous recovery that can only take place at medical facilities in the United States, friends say.

She and her trapeze partner, Davaasuren Altantsetseg, known to the world as the “;Mongolian Angels,”; are still recovering, have no means of making a living and have been living off individual donations and charity.





        Those wishing to assist the two women's medical recovery may make checks payable to the “;Mongolian Angels,”; 820 Mililani St., Suite 503, Honolulu 96813.

Some assistance has come from hospitals and nonprofit groups, such as the Queen's Medical Center, the Rehabilitation Hospital of the Pacific and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said Soodoi's sister Chimidtseren.

Chimidtseren, a clinical immunologist in Mongolia, said her sister suffers from some short-term memory loss but is improving, and the family is grateful for the assistance.

“;So many people have helped us,”; Chimidtseren said yesterday in an interview. “;We really appreciate the help. It has been very good.”;

Honolulu police officials are still investigating the accident that took place in the early morning on Dec. 16 at an intersection in Kapahulu.

Unable to work at Cirque Hawaii in Waikiki, the two acrobats were forced to vacate their condominium in Waikiki.

Soodoi has been staying temporarily with a friend in Lanikai, and Altantsetseg, who suffered shoulder and knee injuries, has been staying with a friend in Ewa.

Soodoi, 33, who broke most of her facial bones and spent 12 days in a coma, said she has recovered enough to take short jogs and do push-ups and sit-ups.

Both women are going to require further surgery, friends say.

But Soodoi said she still suffers some pain on the right side of her face, and doctors monitoring her health have advised that she not return to the trapeze for one to two years.

Soodoi said her body feels fine, but she will follow her physician's recommendations because she takes her responsibility on the trapeze seriously.

“;I have people's lives in my hands,”; Soodoi said. “;I have to make sure I'm OK.”;

Meanwhile they have been on the receiving end of random acts of kindness.

They have received donations from individuals, help from the Mongolian community, friendship from a chi kung group exercising at Kapiolani Park, and free dinners at Villa Paradiso Northern Italian Cuisine, said friend Anthony Good.

Good said there is a chance that Soodoi will be able to live and work at the YMCA facility at Camp Erdman.

Good said Soodoi's recovery is a remarkable story.

“;She has no bitterness,”; he said. “;She's inspiring.”;