Florida Supermodel Niki Taylor Critically Hurt in Car Crash

Supermodel Niki Taylor remained in critical condition with severe liver damage early Wednesday, three days after a car she was riding in crashed into a utility pole.

Frankie Smith, assistant director of patient care at Grady Memorial Hospital, said Taylor's condition was unchanged from late Tuesday.

The 26-year-old Taylor, who was wearing a seat belt, was not thrown from the car and initially appeared to be unhurt, publicist Lou Taylor said.

"Everyone felt she was OK, and then she had severe stomach pains," said the publicist, who is not related to the model.

Lou Taylor said the model was awake but heavily sedated on Tuesday. No surgery was planned.

Driver James Renegar, 27, told police he lost control of the 1993 Nissan Maxima when he looked down to answer his cell phone. Police said they did not suspect drugs or alcohol contributed to the accident.

Renegar and passenger John Lack, 30, were treated and released after the accident. Lou Taylor described them as old friends of the model.

Niki Taylor was in Atlanta to visit friends for the weekend and planned to return home to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on Monday to begin acting lessons, her publicist said.

The model's parents, Barbara and Ken Taylor, and an older sister were with her at the hospital.

Taylor is the mother of twin 6-year-old boys, Jake and Hunter.

She landed on the cover of Seventeen magazine when she was barely 14. She has appeared in ads for Cover Girl cosmetics and Liz Claiborne fashions and has been in Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue.

In a 1995 Forbes magazine survey ranking the world's top models, Taylor ranked sixth with estimated 1994 earnings of $2.4 million.

Another sister, Krissy, also a promising model, died in July 1995 at age 17 of asthma. Niki Taylor found her sister unconscious at the family's home in Pembroke Pines, Fla.

She dealt with the devastating death of her sister by getting back to work quickly.

"I've been through a lot, but everything has been a learning experience," she said in an interview published in Cosmopolitan in 1998. "It's made me a much wiser, stronger person."