The family of a 6-year-old Utah girl paralyzed by a stray bullet tries to find a new normal

CITY OF SALT LAKE (ABC4) — A 6-year-old girl was lucky to be alive after she was hit by a stray bullet that flew through the wall of her family’s apartment.

Draya Ransey, 6, was going to the bathroom when a stray shot left her paralyzed from the chest down. The bullet went straight into her back and hit her spine.

Her mother, Porschia Ransey, said it came out of nowhere.

“She thought, ‘I have to go to the bathroom.’ I said, ‘OK, but when you come back, take your clothes and then you can use the tablet,'” Porschia Ransey said. “We heard a loud bang and a crash and I thought, ‘Drew, go see what your sister is doing,’ because I think she’s just having fun because the door is closed. So Drew opened the door and saw her first. And when he opened it, I looked back because he said, “Draya’s on the floor.” And I said, “Draya’s on the floor?”

Draya’s mother found her lying in a pool of blood on the bathroom floor. At first she thought Draya had fallen off the toilet and hit her head.

– I just saw him lying there. The way she looked at me when she kissed my mother. I didn’t hear her voice… there was blood on the floor… I didn’t see my baby still there.”

But it wasn’t until they got to the hospital that they realized she had been shot. Draya’s father, Gregory Harris, described receiving messages from doctors as like watching a horror movie.

He says Draya was extremely active and was destined to be his track star. However, now he uses a wheelchair and is unable to perform any activities on his own.

“Sometimes he’ll say, ‘Mom, I want to go now,'” Porschia Ransey said. “And then I have to tell her, ‘You’ll do it, honey.’ And sometimes her siblings even say, “Drea, you’ll walk.”

Shortly after the incident, Draya and three of her siblings moved to Utah to receive specialized care at Primary Children’s and Neuroworx. Between doctor visits and home health care visits, patients are still getting used to the new normal.

“When it comes to our favorite activities, cinema, we have to take an oxygen cylinder with us, we have to take a book bag with over 100 items. We have to use a pulse reader that beeps,” Porschia Ransey said.

While dealing with the trauma of that day is physically exhausting for them, what they are really feeling is the mental impact. Draya and her siblings are potty trained, but since she was shot, going to the bathroom has become a challenge for all the children.

“I had to help them regain their confidence before they could use the bathroom. So I had to go there with them and sit down,” Harris said. “Our youngest still has difficulty going to the bathroom. Accidents happen to her every day.

Draya’s parents tell they are trying to shake the guilt they say they feel every day.

“My child should not be in a wheelchair. My baby should not have a feeding tube in his stomach. My baby shouldn’t have a trachea. “My child should not have to be connected to three different machines from Monday to Sunday.”

Although Draya’s prognosis is not promising, her family is committed to staying positive. They are determined that she will be able to walk again while making her new reality enjoyable.

“She loves her power seat because it feels like she’s driving,” Porschia Ransey said.

Although the Draya Family cannot change the past, they hope that this will not happen to any other family in the future.

“Just be careful, because you don’t know who’s behind that bullet. You don’t know whose life it might impact. You don’t know what you can do to this child, this family, this person.

Since the tragic accident in November, they have had difficulty finding and paying for transportation. They do not have a family car, and since there are six of them, it is difficult to find a company that will provide them with ridesharing. They take Uber everywhere and spend thousands of dollars doing so.

They recently contacted a family who had just lost a son who is now selling their wheelchair accessible van. The family wanted to make sure the van would go to another family in need, so they are asking for less than half the normal price. But Draya’s parents still have medical bills and other worries. They need another $30,000 to buy the van.

So if you want to help them get a van, you can donate to this GoFundMe.