RICHMOND, Mo. - It’s been a little more than one month since 6-year-old Izzy Smith of Richmond, Missouri was accidently run over by a lawn mower . She ran outside to play while her grandfather was mowing his lawn.
"I was just playing a game, and I thought it was going always forward but turns out he was going backwards and forwards," said Izzy.
After spending 23 days at the University of Kansas hospital, Izzy finally returned to her family’s home in Richmond, Missouri. The charismatic little girl with an adorable gap tooth smile has remained incredibly optimistic the last few weeks, and now she hopes her grandfather is able to forgive himself.
"I told him, don't be mad at yourself, it's just an accident," she said.
To save Izzy’s leg, doctors performed a rare surgery by removing a section of her shin, rotating her foot and attaching it to her thigh. Her foot now functions as her knee and it will soon fit into a prosthetic so that she can walk and play again. But for now, she uses a wheelchair and her mother’s loving arms.
"It's just easier for us to pick her up. She's adjusting well and we're back to normal,” said Izzy’s mother Stephanie Williams.
The family has been getting an overwhelming amount of support from the community. The neighbors have washed their clothes once a week and cook dinner for the family every night. A friend in town even donated a hand railing from the lumber yard in Richmond, Missouri.
"They had it built within two days of us being home," Izzy's mom said. "It was awesome."
But what her mother is most impressed and inspired by is her daughter’s strength and resilience.
"Her positive attitude it makes it seem like the minor paper cuts and stuff you don't even have a right to complain about if she can go all this time without complaining about what happened to her," she said.
Izzy doesn’t let her new leg hold her back and like any six-year-old Izzy is very active. In her wheelchair, she practices T-Ball for a tournament in her honor at the end of June. She also still hangs out with friends, but she’s looking forward to her new leg.
"Kids are more resilient than you would ever believe. I learned that the worst thing is never the last thing and you just learn to accept stuff and just move on," said Williams.
There will be a 5K walk and fundraiser for Izzy on Saturday at Anytime Fitness on 218 S. Thornton. Anybody needing more information can call 816-776-5656. Registration for the 5K begins at 6:30 a.m., with the race beginning at 8 a.m.