HOUSTON — KHOU 11 first introduced you to the Smith family almost six months ago.
Toddlers Bentley and Messiah Smith were nearly killed on the Fourth of July following an alleged road-rage shooting.
Deputies say the shots fired by Bayron Rivera, 18, into a family’s truck caused a spark, which ignited fireworks in the back seat.
Rivera's trial is now set to begin in March.
Almost half a year later after we first met them, the family continues to heal.
“It’s almost like having newborns again because they’re up most of the night," said mother Jasmin Wolford.
Wolford has had to quit her job at the Harris County courthouse to care for her sons full time.
Two days of each week are spent at Shriner's Hospital in Galveston. They are there more when they have surgeries.
It has been tough for everyone, especially when every little bump on the knee is magnified due to their fragile skin.
“It hurts times ten for them," Wolford said.
Messiah and Bentley are finally allowed to go outside again, if it is not too sunny.
Sometimes people stop them in public.
“It surprised me," said the boy's father, Reginald Smith. "We don’t get as many bad looks like, ‘Oh my God, look at those kids.' It’s more like, 'Hey we’ve seen them, I know what happened to you all. There’s a lot of people who have met us and just broke down in tears, and been like, 'I’m so sorry.' I say don’t be sorry, just thank God.”
This family’s story began on the Fourth of July. Smith had just bought fireworks that night and the four were heading home.
An altercation ensued involving another driver and harsh words were exchanged. But when it seemed to have ended, as Smith drove off with his family, deputies say Rivera fired a semi-automatic rifle at the truck. They say a spark from a bullet ignited the fireworks inside.
The boys were strapped in their car seats as their little bodies burned. Somehow, everyone survived.
“It is a miracle, man," Smith said as he has had to relearn how to use his right hand. "These are walking babies, walking miracles.”
The family is still hopeful and always grateful.
"I'm just grateful they’re alive. They can move," Smith said. "I still recognize my kids after being burned like that.”
The alleged shooter sits in a jail cell as he awaits trial.
The boys, their mom and their dad never miss a court date, as they quietly watch and wait for justice to begin.
The family has established a GoFundMe account for the boys if you would like to donate, tap/click here.
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