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Posted: 6:05 p.m. Thursday, July 19, 2012
By Torie Wells
CHARLOTTE, N.C. —
Three-year-old Kilah Davenport looked beautiful for her big trip home Thursday.
"She's a miracle. They told me I would never take her home and now I get to," said Kirbi Davenport, Kilah's mother. "It's like taking home a newborn baby for the first time."
But Thursday's homecoming was flanked by an escort. Firetrucks, police cars and motorcycles guided Kilah home to friends and family in her own front yard.
"I've watched her for 63 days fight to prove everybody wrong, and we're not done," said Kirbi.
Kilah's family didn't know if she would even survive after police say her stepfather Joshua Houser abused her, leaving her with a severe head injury. He is in jail, charged with felony child abuse.
"I trusted him to take care of her that day and he didn't. He ended up hurting my baby," said Kirbi.
Doctors couldn't say if Kilah would ever talk or walk again. But over the past three months, she has been fighting back. On Wednesday, she took five steps, with help.
"She's like a baby, like an infant, so she has to start over again, but that's OK," said Leslie Davenport, her grandmother.
"Nobody's stopping her and she knows that," said Kirbi.
Kilah still has another surgery ahead to replace the bone in her skull and take the tracheotomy out. And she still has lots of therapy to go through. But already her family is encouraged.
"I don't feel like my daughter's a victim anymore. She's a survivor, she's not a victim," said Kirbi.
Kilah's family is using her strength to try and help others. They are working on a law in her name to strengthen penalties for child abuse.
"I want to make sure that nobody else goes through what I've been through and what my parents have been through, more or less what my Kilah's been through," said Kirbi.
Her family would like the law to increase jail time to 25 years to life and create a child abuse registry.
Houser is back in court Sept. 4.
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