Michelle Hurst, who plays the hardened Miss Claudette on the hit Netflix series, Orange Is The New Black, has emerged from a 16-day medically-induced coma following a car accident before the holidays. The news comes as the series launched a Kickstarter-like fundraising campaign on YouCaring.com to help Hurst’s family to pay for medical expenses and time off. Hurst will need the expenses and time off to recover from injuries close to her spine. She’s currently in the ICU at the UNC Chapel Hill Hospital in North Carolina.
It’s unclear when the campaign officially launched but in a matter of hours the site raised over $3,000 surpassing the $5,000 goal. Piper Kerman, author of the memoir on which the series is based, led the rallying cry on Twitter.
— Piper Kerman (@Piper) January 16, 2014
Several cast members, including Natasha Lyonne, retweeted and shared the link.
Please give what you can to help Michelle Hurst – the amazing actress who plays Ms. Claudette on OITNB. 💕💕💕💕 http://t.co/vRatvCJSxk
— natasha lyonne (@nlyonne) January 16, 2014
The show returns to Netflix sometime mid-2014. According to Variety, the show has yet to comment on Hurst’s status on the series.