CBSN

Lynch Following Doctor's Orders

U.S. Army Pfc. Jessica Lynch is carried on a stretcher off a C-17 military plane at the U.S. air base in Ramstein, Germany, April 3, 2003. Lynch was treated at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany for a head wound, a spinal injury, fractures to her right arm, both legs, and her right foot and ankle.
AP
Jessica Lynch has a new pair of eyeglasses and a close friend by her bedside. The 19-year-old supply clerk, an Army private first class, has even ordered her favorite food, reports CBS News Correspondent Stephan Kaufman in Landstuhl: turkey, steamed carrots and apple sauce, although she's still being fed intravenously.

America's best-known POW was getting VIP treatment Friday at the military's Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany, but officials still aren't releasing many details of her ordeal or the circumstances of her injuries: a head wound and fractures in her right arm, both legs, her right foot and ankle, and an injury to her spine.

Her family is also heading from their hometown in West Virginia to Germany Saturday to visit her in the hospital.

She had a back operation Thursday and surgery for other broken bones Friday, said the commander of the hospital, Col. David Rubenstein. She will need "extensive rehabilitative services" but was expected to recuperate completely, he said.

After numerous conflicting reports, doctors in Germany are now saying that Lynch did indeed suffer from gunshot wounds. She has a bullet entry and exit wound in her left leg and a bullet entry and exit wound in her right arm. The wounds are consistent with low velocity gun wounds, doctors say.

"On our last report that we received, Jessie came through her first operation in flying colors," Gregory Lynch, the private's father, told CBS News Early Show co-anchor Hannah Storm. "She was in good spirits. And I think we got our girl back."

She's "a daughter any parent would be proud of," Rubenstein said, and has shown steady improvements. "The prognosis for her recovery is excellent," Rubenstein said.

Lynch and the other soldiers were caught in an ambush when she and other members of her company made a wrong turn in Nasariyah. U.S. commandos rescued her Tuesday.

An Iraqi lawyer reportedly tipped U.S. forces to Lynch's location in a Nasariyah hospital.

The 32-year-old lawyer, identified only as Mohammed, told several newspaper reporters at the Marine headquarters in Iraq that he peered through a window at the hospital where his wife worked as a nurse and saw a sight that "cut" his heart: Lynch being slapped in the face by a black-clad Iraqi security agent.

"We owe him our life and Jessie's life for what he has done," her father said.

At the hospital in Germany, Rubenstein said Lynch had no television and was not able to follow coverage of the war, and her father said she may not be aware what a media sensation she is in the United States.

"We haven't talked too much on that," he said. "Only she asked if she made the local paper, and I said 'I think you're a lot better than that.'"