INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Last year, 3-year-old Hoosier captured the nation's heart after having all four of his limbs partially amputated. Now he's getting more of himself back.
“I'm thankful to have him still,” said Nick Thompson, the father of young Jeremiah Cox, "He’s a 3-year-old now. He's a real kid inside. He plays, he hops.”
Doctors at Riley Children's Hospital were forced into emergency surgery after a mystery illness went septic in Jeremiah. His story began circulating the country, as did an outpouring of support.
Now, a year later, he's learning to use prosthetics, and trying to stand up straight. The boy is finding new ways to move around but must endure painful leg stretching if he will ever walk again.
“Jeremiah has figured out compensatory ways to move like hopping. His bones and his muscles have sort of conformed to that mobility pattern,” said his pediatric therapist Laurie Niederhauser-Emil, "He has to learn to bear weight on his legs before he’s ever going to be able to walk."
He's also been using prosthetic arms to learn how to grab his toys, and to eat on his own.
“Things like holding onto his toothbrush, holding onto his fork, holding onto his spoon,” said Amy Bercovitz, his occupational therapist at Riley, “That allows him to explore his environment, to play, to socialize with his peers, to give high fives.”
“I hope one day I see him running through the house with his brothers and sisters, you know just at school using his arms fully," said Thompson
There is no time-table for when Jeremiah may begin to walk, but his family says they love and accept him in every shape and form.