Sharon Budd will return home to Stark County on Wednesday, after three months of treatment and rehabilitation in Pennsylvania hospitals for injuries she suffered after a rock was dropped from a highway overpass onto the car she was riding in.

LAKE TWP. After three long months in Pennsylvania hospitals, Sharon Budd will return home Wednesday.

She rang a ceremonial victory bell — with about 60 well-wishers — at Geisinger HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital in Danville, Pennsylvania, before the nearly five-hour drive to her Lake Township house, where friends and neighbors are expected to greet her.

The 52-year-old Edison Middle School teacher said today she was looking forward to getting back to her home and seeing her 12-year-old dog, Coco.

Budd was critically injured July 10 when a rock was dropped from a highway overpass onto her vehicle. She was in the front passenger seat, with her husband in the back and her college-age daughter driving their Nissan Rogue through Pennsylvania, when the 4.6-pound rock crashed through the windshield.

Budd’s skull was crushed, she lost her right eye, suffered brain damage and has endured five surgical procedures to repair the damage.

When she began to wake up in the intensive care unit, Budd said her first thoughts were disbelief.

“I honestly don’t know why it’s me,” she said. “I found it just kind of strange.”

As a cancer survivor, Budd said she was dismayed to find herself again in a hospital, without her brown hair.

“At the time I was like, there’s no way this could be me again,” she said. “Why would I have to go through this two times?”

Dr. Ed Heinle, who treated her in the rehab facility, said that when she first arrived, she could not communicate and it took a pair of therapists to help her with basic movements.

“Given the extent of injury and level of function, we’re thrilled at how much progress we’ve made,” Heinle said.

Chelsea Matukaitis, a physical therapist, said Sharon Budd’s personality made her many friends among the staff.

“She lights up every room comes into, for sure,” Matukaitis said. “We’re going to miss her — it’s going to feel very empty around here.”

Budd’s husband, Randy, has remained by her side in Danville, Pennsylvania, throughout the majority of her recovery. He said the family plans to leave Geisinger HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital Wednesday morning, returning by early afternoon.

Her home has been prepared for her arrival, with grab bars, alarms, bed rails and repositioned furniture. Randy Budd said he was looking ahead to “normalcy — whatever normal’s like.”

“We’re absolutely happy that we have her,” he said after one of his wife’s recent surgeries.

In early October, she underwent a surgery to close airways in her brain that hadn’t healed from earlier surgeries, slightly delaying her return. She can now walk and has regained limited vision in her left eye.

Though Randy Budd said his wife still has trouble recalling certain information, she has regained her positive personality.

“One thing that’s really come out with her is her sense of humor,” he said.

Still, Sharon Budd’s progress will need to be measured in years, not months, he said. Her long-term prognosis remains uncertain.

“They told us to look at this a year from now to give a measurement of how Sharon’s going to be, who is Sharon going to be,” Randy Budd said.

Four young men, ages 17 and 18, face charges in the attack.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.