It's been 25 years since the tour bus accident that nearly left her paralyzed, now Grammy-winning superstar Gloria Estefan is reflecting on her miraculous recovery.
She appeared at the Official World Celebration of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's 80th Birthday at the Global Compassion Summit as a panelist, handpicked by His Holiness to speak at the event.
Gloria thanked him for inspiring her over the years, saying, “Your teachings have become a part of my music.” His Holiness invited Gloria to share her story with the summit audience.
Estefan revealed she learned the power of music as a young woman when it helped her through the loss of her father to a debilitating illness, but it wasn't until the aftermath of the 1990 accident that she truly realized how powerful music can be.
Gloria broke two vertebrae in the accident and was told she would never walk again. One doctor, however, said something that really struck her. “I will tell you what medicine says, and then I will tell you what I have found, which is that there are things which you cannot explain through science or medicine.”
For Gloria, those things turned out to be the power of music and the power of prayer. By 1990, her music had touched millions of fans around the world, and when she needed them the most, they came through.
“I received hundreds of thousands of letters from people… telling me that they were sending me their love, their good thoughts, their prayers… I could feel their prayers as an electrical energy with me in that hospital room. My family would come in and think I was delusional… they had known the prognosis… and I would say, 'I'm going to be okay. I can feel everyone praying for me.'”
Gloria's inspiring journey comes to life this fall on the Broadway stage in “On Your Feet! The Story of Emilio & Gloria Estefan.”