Support pouring in for Houston kids who lost parents in crash

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by Courtney Zubowski / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on July 15, 2011 at 5:55 PM

Updated Sunday, Jul 17 at 10:50 AM

HOUSTON -- The uncle of three Briargrove children injured in a car accident that killed their parents says the siblings are giving him strength with their positive attitudes.

"One of the boys told me the worst thing about the accident is that they lost their parents, but the best thing is that they have us here for them, so it’s some powerful stuff," said the children’s uncle, Matt Berry.

Josh Berry, 41, and Robin Berry, 40, died on July 2 when a car veered into oncoming traffic in West Texas and hit their minivan.

Peter, 9, Aaron, 8, and Willa, 6, were hurt in the crash.

Willa, who broke her ankle and her wrist, has since been released from the hospital.

Peter and Aaron are paralyzed from the waist down. They are at Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital in the Texas Medical Center and will be transferred to Shriners Hospital in Chicago early next week.

"You kind of lose it on the way to the hospital, and you lose it when you go to bed and then you come back and be strong for the children," said Berry. "The injuries are severe. There’s not one injury, there’s multiple spinal injuries, so that’s the bad thing. The good thing is they’re children and children, you know, ask anyone in the field, they’re resilient."

According to Aaron’s doctor, his injuries are more serious than those of his brother, and it is taking him longer to recover.

"He has orthopedic, spine and abdominal injuries. He is slowly making progress and his spine has been stabilized with a special orthopedic brace," said Dr. Charles Cox with Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital.

Dr. Cox says Peter is making more progress in terms of physical therapy and able to eat on his own.

"He doesn’t have as many external, orthopedic, injuries and bracing requirements, but he’s also recovering from an injured abdominal injury as well, repair of his diaphragm," said Dr. Cox.

The brothers are expected to stay in the Chicago hospital for six to eight weeks before returning to Texas, where they will need to adapt to a new environment.

"They are going to have new needs in terms of mobility, in terms of access to the house, a flight of stairs isn’t going to be navigable, bathrooms are going to have to be different, things like that," said Cox.

The story of the Berry children is getting world-wide attention. It’s appeared on television and in newspapers all over the place.

Celebrities such as Kourtney Kardashian and Brooke Burke have tweeted and blogged about it. Thursday, Houston Rocket Kyle Lowry and Denver Nugget Wilson Chandler stopped by the boys’ hospital rooms.

Other professional athletes also have plans to visit them.

"The fact that the support from the professional athletes and everybody, I mean Dynamo, Rockets, Nuggets, Texans, Astros it’s been overwhelming," Berry said. "We wouldn’t be able to walk today if it wasn’t for the support of not just the celebrities, the community, but everyone out there that’s done stuff for the kids."

For more information on how to help and upcoming fundraisers for the children, click here.

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