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Miracles are happening: The extraordinary survival story of England’s youngest girl with 90% burns

And I was completely unaware of any situation whatsoever, and I just turned up basically at my doorstep and there was three fire engines there.

Now, at the time I’d never realized that it was actually for my flat and I just thought that something was happening somewhere else.

So ignored him.

At first, as I actually walked around the corner, I could actually see the sort of Hose pipes going into me flat, and then that’s when I actually realized that really hit me.

Then firemen fought their way through the smoke and saw what they thought was a doll lying in the cot.

Only when she gasped for breath did they realize it was a two-year-old girl.

By the time they got her outside, Terry had stopped breathing.

The thing that’s probably going through my mind the most was actually see her alive, because we were basically told that one minute she can be live and then meant she could be dead the night the accident happened was was probably the longest, longest night of our Lives.

Respect all my life anyway.

SUE & DAVE Terri’s grandparents

That’s uh from from the moment we got the phone call, about half past 11, 12 o’clock at night, just, I suppose, time sort of stood still.

Terry was taken to a specialist Burns unit at Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford and put on a life support machine in the operating theater.

Her condition went from bad to worse.

The surgeon basically told us that because you’ve had so many problems in theater trying to keep her alive and that, as you keep giving up that if it happened again, what do you want us to do?

MARGARET & MICHAEL Terri’s grandparents

It was um, as if she’d gone and somebody else had returned, had come back.

I was very scared to go in to say: to begin with, I think again, because I had she had died.

I wanted my memories of how she was.

I didn’t want to say to look at a bundle, if you like, and not think, not think of it, as Terry.

The hardest thing was not actually being able to touch her.

You want attached to her.

You wanted to talk to her, but you couldn’t.

But every hour, every day went past was an extra day that she was actually live, and that was basically, I think, the main.

I think the main thing was basically she stayed alive than I did something.

She’s more winter.

Ring up and talk to him if she wants to, but I’ve never stopped her in that respect, but I think it’s something which she’s got to deal with it.

Julie blames herself, which I can understand, although the mum we’ve all told her it was a tragic accident which could have happened to anyone, and I think there is an element of guilt, I mean I, which I can understand.

I mean she’s only got to look at Terry and you feel guilty.

She knows what it is like in there.

She couldn’t get Terry out.

I mean I I’d hate to think what I’d do to anybody’s mind, that they couldn’t get their own child ever out of a fire.

But when it first happened, I mean we used to sit and talk to her and I told her I’m gonna blame her.

I mean I still love her

And she’s still my daughter.

Terry’s mum hasn’t seen Terry or anybody in the family for two years in the early stages she stayed in contact and then so things were right.

But I mean at least he stayed in contact with Terry and us, and now it’s just just all gone.

We send Julie birthday cards, Christmas cards, text messages, but we don’t get the response back.

I mean if you like, I’ve lifted, we’ve left the door open, for I mean not only us of The Wider family, but she doesn’t want to make contact with this it.

She has just cut herself from all of us.

We’ve got Terry, but uh, in in Heaven, Terry, we’ve lost a daughter to a certain extent, which is, Mr, sad, but she hasn’t actually asked.

You know where is mum or anything like that?

That’ll probably be when she’s older.

She’s going to start asking the questions of what happened.

Where you know where’s my mum now?

Mom’s departure left Terry and her dad to face an uncertain future together.

I think Paul Calvers bird is a single dad.

Since a fire left his daughter Terry with horrific Burns two years ago, he’s had to give up his job as a warehouse man to look after her.

But he does get help from a team of therapists, care workers and nurses.

I still find it difficult to take her right because of the way people look at her and the way people stare.

Thank you, maybe I done the wrong thing, but I looked at people’s faces and people don’t have to say anything.

Sometimes you can say it in their eyes and I find that very hard.

You saw pity in Sunrise.

Okay, fair enough, but another eyes you look

And you don’t know what you’re saying.

Horrible when they get to walk out for all that sort of stuff in it and fry it all up.

That’s right and like all smoky.

Yeah, I don’t think there’s a day goes past when Terry isn’t aware that she’s different to other little girls.

When you see her for the first time, it is horrifying.

You can put a hat on her little head, but you can’t cover her face up.

All I can hope is that Society in the future changes how they view people who have disabilities, and it would be nice to think that Terry could go to the shops and people could actually get past the horror of her little face and actually see the pretty little girl inside come in.

I can’t now come on in, come on.

So what are you gonna do at school today?

The biggest worry for me is how the children are going to react.

You never, ever know how children are going to react to another child, even to a normal child.

You don’t know how they’re going to react.

It was a huge new experience for us all.

The way Terry looks did alarm them, but I don’t think they were able to put into words what it was.

I think they were just frightened by her being so different.

Some children were frightened that there’d been a fire, and could this happen to them as well in their homes?

And so we just repeated: it was a terrible accident, and it doesn’t happen usually.

Children have been worried about her hands, particularly to have no fingers, I think, is the most strange thing for them, and they want to know a lot about that.

But after questions for a little while they seem to get used to it.

The occupational therapist up at Chelmsford she actually come down and spoke to all the parents.

She really doesn’t seem to be aware of them at the moment, and that’s great.

It’s not getting in her way.

Let’s go find Mrs Carson showed her, because this actually happened at an early age for her.

She’s grown up with her

And I think her parents at the moment doesn’t actually bother her.

There’s not much comment said about it really, but when she gets older, when she goes to different School, it’s gonna be a new start for her again.

It can be straight back to Square one.

It’s easier now.

While the children are younger, it’s when they get to about 10- 11.. then children can get quite hard or not hard but cruel.

It’s going to get worse as she gets older and I’ve I’ve said basically from the start that being a girl, I think is going to be harder than what it would be for a boy.

And as far as looks go, I don’t think that’s going to be much of a problem until probably until she get into her teens and she start meeting boys and that, and then I think that’s when the problems are going to start beginning

And she’s going to start questioning why she looks like that.

Now it’s a big day for Terry.

When she lost her hair in the fire, Paul knew it would never grow back, but now she’s five and her scalp is healed.

She’s getting the next best thing, the wig.

It was a suggestion that was made right back at the very beginning, really, when this first happened

And they said it wouldn’t be for many years, and we never thought this day, like she, can really tell you the truth- shall we take just take just a little bit off there and then, when you put it on your head, the hair won’t come down quite so close to your eyes.

No, because I’m going to cut just a little bit of it off.

Hey, are you gonna watch me?

I’m gonna cut it off.

She’s very excited in today, where she was up at seven as normal and wanting to go and get the wig done.

You know he should have been here before the shop would have been opened.

Really, I swear, I got cut at Square.

It’s the smallest one that we’ve ever made.


Yeah, you possibly May deal with children unfortunately perhaps lost their hair through cancer, but with them perhaps their hair will grow back.

So a five a week will do until the hair comes back, which is not going to be the case for Terry.

So now she’s got a real hair wig, and that’s not nothing.

Where’s the mirror?

You look good.

Have you got your brush so you can brush it?

How’s that?

I think Trevor’s cut that nice, hasn’t he actually?

You look so nice, I think they’re going to say: you look very pretty.

It’s lovely hair, isn’t it?

Every child’s got hair, so she’s going to look the same as anybody else.

Should I do the same?

She’ll better comb it like anybody else.

You can get it wet and dryer.

You know all them silly little things that everybody think about every day, but to her something completely different and that makes her normal, and this is about as normal as we can get her at the moment, at this stage of time.

This is a Little Dream.

Come True.

That’s all our dreams come true.

We’re, at the end of the day.

We all dream to show our hair- a girly sort of thing really.

I’ve got every, every sort of girl’s dream.

We’d have curls and a blonde hair, and she’s got it.

Oh, it’s the start of the school summer holidays, but Terry will be spending the next few weeks in hospital.

In two days time she’ll have surgery to her hands and neck.

Terry faces operations every year for the rest of her life.

This will be her 16th in just three years.

For me personally, when Terry goes in the hospital as Hell I hate it.

Um, we have been up to pull.

Some waved her off, but by that time I’m usually in Mr tears.

What about this operation?

I think it was a fact of something’s been placed over her- over her face really, and the Masters have known me about how big is her face.

So it is quite a daunting thing to do.

You didn’t give them trouble, do you, Terry?

What do you do?

What’d you do?

I cry, you do, and you kick him as well, don’t you?

You kick him, don’t you? and thump them.

They still.

Should we put this on the back?

As Terry gets older, her stays in hospital become more traumatic and with every operation Paul’s anxiety increases.

She’s seen the equipment before, she’s played the things before and she knows what.

Everything is ready.

That’s a good girl.

You’ve got to give your daddy some oxygen while he’s asleep, haven’t you what nothing’s logo

I mean.

I know she’s got to go in the hospital.

She’s got to have the operations to help her.

The hardest part for me is going up to see her after any operation, because you feel she’s taking that step backwards.

Um, she goes backwards before she comes forwards

And I find that very, very hard, just goes a little bit red.

Can I pop it on your toe?

It doesn’t hurt.

I did to myself.

If you want, sorry, that little red light.

Yeah, This is when the bat downsides of it.

Really she’s happy all year.

Then once a year she’s got to go through this

And it’s going to get harder every year.

And they’ve told me it’s going to get hard, and this is now proven to me.

That’s going to get harder, but it’d be harder for Terry as well.

So we’re both going to have to work through this together.

Then hopefully we can both get it through together.

There we go.

It’s 24 hours before Terry’s operation.

Surgeons feel it’s important to help her use her hands better, not just to open presents, but to write and to dress and feed herself.

To achieve this, they intend making her two tiny thumbs by splitting the skin between the bones in her hands.

Oh, they also want to release the pressure on skin grafts around her neck, which have tightened as she’s grown.

Hey guys, Peter Javolski is the surgeon who saved Terry’s life after the fire and he’ll be in charge again tomorrow.

Yeah, You’re moving that one really well, aren’t you have?

I made it not yet.

We’re gonna do that tomorrow.

Oh, rolling, don’t look, I’m not looking.

I’ll be keeping my eyes closed and have a look now and go.


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