The 9-year-old girl, who survived after being hit by a car that then crashed into her Georgia home, says her brother saved her life.
As Dearly previously reported, the crash happened on March 29 as LaDerihanna Holmes and a friend were playing in the front yard of her home. A nearby security camera captured the horrific scene.
As NBC News reports, Charlette Bolton, LaDerihanna’s mother, says her daughter’s 12-year-old brother stepped up to the plate when it counted most and performed CPR.
“He was hysterical at first. Something just came over him. He start, you know, pumping her chest, pumping her chest.”
Despite suffering various injuries including a skull fracture, LaDerihanna has already taken her first steps using a walker, NBC News reports.
When it comes to her brother, the 9-year-old said:
“He saved my life.”
But her family is surprised she’s alive, let alone speaking.
Derryl Holmes, LaDerihanna’s father, told NBC:
“From day one, I didn’t expect her to be talking, didn’t expect her to be smiling for a while.”
Her mother supported this notion, expressing similar shock.
“She’s truly a miracle. From what happened to her I’m surprised she’s alive.”
Further, LaDerihanna expressed her gratitude for all of her supporters.
The young cheerleader said:
“It’s just wonderful and overwhelming that they’re helping me and praying for me and putting me in their prayers, and it’s just so nice. My goal is to get better with the help from everybody in the world.”
After she fully recovers, LaDerihanna “most definitely” plans to rejoin her cheerleading squad.
“I’m coming back. I’m coming soon.”
Bolton acknowledged her daughter’s strength and said she will gladly allow her to do her cheer stunts in their home now.
The mother told NBC:
“She’s a strong, resilient little girl. She’s very, very strong — she keeps me strong on my every day. I have no doubt that she’s going to make a full recovery. I’ll never stop her from flipping in my room again.”
As for the suspected driver, Gabriel Jabri Fordham, 28, turned himself in on Tuesday, NBC News reports.
According to the DeKalb Sheriff’s Office, Fordham is being held without bail. Law enforcement has charged him with serious injury by vehicle, failure to maintain a lane, failure to stop at a stop sign, reckless driving, and hit-and-run.
Ryan C. Williams, Fordham’s attorney, released a statement on Wednesday saying his client was in the middle of fighting off a carjacker when the incident occurred. NBC News reports that Williams says “a fight ensued inside the vehicle that caused the accident.”
Also, Fordham says the alleged carjacker can be seen in the security video wearing white pants and running away.
However, LaDerihanna’s parents and attorney aren’t buying his story.
In doubt, Bolton told NBC News:
“When you get carjacked you don’t get carjacked from the passenger’s side. I don’t believe it one bit. It’s outrageous… There will be justice for my daughter.”
Furthermore, the family’s lawyer, Chris Stewart, pointed out that the suspect had a number of days to come up with his alibi.
Nevertheless, Bolton says she is just grateful for her prayers for her daughter’s recovery have been answered.
A GoFundMe has been set up to help Laderihanna’s family with medical expenses.