Hunter’s friend Scott was finally able to start his 5th grade school year – and the school had an hour long assembly to welcome him back.

Really, it was a 10 minute welcome back and a 50 minute education on what happened to Scott and what it took for him to get out of the hospital – and the journey he still has ahead of him. The hospital has a life counselor that works to make kids comfortable with their new situation.

And part of making him comfortable is explaining to his peers why he may look or move differently than he once did. This little assembly helps to eliminate some of the questions and stares. For the most part his injuries are still bandaged and they will be covered for the next 18 months. But you can see the scarring on his face and especially his left arm and hands and you can understand why people may stare. But the child life counselor, nurses and therapists walked through every step of his recovery, showing his progress in pictures.

Hunter and his friend were willing participants when it came time to be bandaged and to wear the splints Scott was required to wear.

I think Scott’s situation is unique because of the support system he already had in this school. It is a community of people that know him and love him and they’ve shown their support since the accident. In fact, he packed a hospital waiting room for his birthday party!

However, some burn victims that were in the hospital with him did not have the same love and support. I can see how hard the transition from the hospital to home to back to school would be for some of these kids. I believe Scott, however, is going to be just fine. In most ways he hasn’t missed a beat. The only beat he’s missing is playing football at recess. And even then his friends are willing to give up football and play games he can participate in. I think Scott’s life will be blessed by his friends lifting him up and his friends have learned charity and will forever be changed for good

A funny little story: That evening, the boys were at our house when we realized that two of the news stations (that were present at the assembly) were going to air the story. The boys waited in anticipation to see their debut on TV. After the first station aired the story they were jumping around with excitement – they were now famous! They showed the boys at the assembly, they showed pictures of him swollen in his coma, they showed him riding to school in a sports car that morning…and the only thing Scott pointed out was his voice. “Why did they make me sound like that? I don’t really sound like that!”

I hate to break it to you, but yes you do!!

Here’s a news article about his reentry.