PALM HARBOR, Fla. A Florida toddler who lost both her feet in a tragic lawn mower accident will walk again, her family says.
Ireland Nugent, 2, had her feet severed at the ankles when her father accidentally ran over her with a riding lawn mower at their home Wednesday evening.
The Tampa Bay, Florida home where a 2-year-old girl had her feet severed by a lawn mower, April 10, 2013.
Ireland’s mother Nicole Nugent, supported by husband Jeremiah, spoke about the horrific incident for the first time Thursday evening.
“She wanted her daddy,” said Nicole Nugent, explaining how the youngster ran towards her husband as he mowed the lawn, reported WTSP News.
Jeremiah Nugent did not hear his wife’s screams and his mower backed over the child.
“I am questioning why that wasn’t me. Why that had to be her,” said Nicole Nugent.
Nicole Nugent said the family’s next-door-neighbor, a nurse, was on the scene immediately. “She came over and took the towels and put pressure on the legs. She saved my daughter’s life.”
Thursday evening, the youngster was in serious condition in hospital and still sedated, but had made some attempts at opening her eyes.
“When I put her hand in my hand, she’s definitely squeezing my hand, and can realize that I am there,” her mother said.
The family say there is positive news, given her amputations are below the knee.
“She will continue to succeed, she will do great things in her life,” Nicole Nugent said. “This is not going to stop Ireland. Of all the children in the world it will not stop my daughter.”
“We can fix her legs and she will walk again and run again and be just as spunky as she was.”
A charity — 50 Legs — has offered to provide Ireland with the best prosthetics for the rest of her life.
“I told them today, all you need to focus on is your daughter’s recovery,” said Steve Chamberlin who runs the charity and lost his own leg in a motorcycle crash. “We’ll take care of the legs.”
The Nugent family’s church is taking donations to help with Ireland’s medical bills and long-term treatment.
Checks can be made out to Trinity Presbyterian Foundation, with “Ireland Nugent” in the memo field. The church has also set up a Paypal fund, which can be accessed on their website, www.trinityclearwater.org
Six weeks after her accident, Ireland was reunited with her rescuers.
Nine weeks after her accident, Ireland was fitted with her new legs.