Four year old injured in accident is 2014 takes her first steps - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Four year old injured in accident is 2014 takes her first steps

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A Bradley County toddler is beating the odds and proving local doctors wrong, after a crash that should have paralyzed her.

Four-year old, Katie Barkley is on the road to recovery. The toddler and her mom, Katelynn, crashed on Lee Highway in 2014 during a snowstorm. Katie's spine was so injured -- she could barely move at all. Doctor's said she'd never walk again. Now she's proving them wrong one step at a time.

READ MORE | 2-year-old still in ICU nearly a week after icy road accident

They are tiny steps but they are mighty ones. Each day four-year old, Katie Barkley continues to defy the odds. “Yesterday, she surprised me with taking 20-30 steps out of nowhere. I was working on the computer and she wanted to come to me. She was at the couch and just walked on over,” said Katie’s mom, Katelynn Barkley.

In February 2014, Katie and her mother were involved in an accident on Lee Highway. She suffered severe spinal and brain injuries. Doctors said she would never walk again. “I told you so. I always told them they were wrong, that they didn't know what they were talking about. They don't know her. They don't know the fighter that she has always been from day one.”

Two years later, Katie is proving everyone wrong. After years of rehab, some setbacks, and persistence Katie is eating food on her own, smiling, and taking her first and most precious steps.  “To see her walking and taking my hand, and actually going around the room and scooting down the stairs.. it's just amazing,” said Katie’s grandmother, Glyndora Candon.

Life at the Barkley’s household slowly returns to life before the accident. Her progress is a reminder for the family that Katie will live a full and healthy life. “I knew this day would come eventually, and it’s finally coming around. She's building her confidence back and getting braver of letting go. She knows she's going to be alright,” said Barkley.

The family plans to head to Kennedy Krieger Rehab Center in Baltimore for a month to help Katie with her eating habits and work on her walking. They say they have no doubt Katie will be able to start preschool in time as a healthy little girl.  

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