Cooper Roberts recovery: 8-year-old boy paralyzed in Highland Park shooting no longer needs intravenous painkillers and feeding tube, family say


Cooper Roberts was paralyzed by the shooting and had to undergo several critical surgeries to survive his injuries, including a severed spinal cord and a partially collapsed lung, his family said. During his recovery, he took heavy painkillers and experienced « constant pain » from slow-healing internal injuries, the family had previously shared.

« Removing all the tubes was a huge boost for Cooper, to be able to eat some of his favorite foods and start maneuvering his wheelchair better without the tubes getting in the way and causing him pain, » the family said. boy in an update.

Cooper started eating « the foods he craved, » his family said, including Lay’s dill pickle-flavored chips, Cheetos and Chick-fil-A.

« We’re all so happy to see him eat – and we’ll be working to get fruit and veg back into the rotation! » says the family.

Cooper and members of his family were among dozens of spectators injured when a gunman opened fire from a rooftop into the crowd below. Seven people were killed in the attack.
The family provided regular updates on Cooper’s condition in a bid to show the challenges of his difficult recovery. They previously shared that the boy struggled to feel « hopeless, sad and angry as the reality of his life sets in ».

Cooper’s energy began to return, the family said, « as he participates in a wheelchair race down the hall of the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab with his physical therapists. »

He also received a « special visit » from former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier, who suffered a serious spinal cord injury in 2017 that temporarily crippled him.

« Ryan has been transparent, genuine, genuine and gracious in sharing his insights with us on his journey to recovery, » the family said.

Covid-19 restrictions limit the time the whole family can spend with Cooper. Cooper particularly misses his twin brother Luke, with whom he was able to spend quality time this week, the Roberts said.

Several members of the Roberts family were injured in the shooting; Luke was hit by shrapnel and released after being treated, a family spokesperson previously said. His mother, Keely Roberts, « was shot in the leg and foot » and had multiple surgeries but was fired because she wanted to be by Cooper’s side, the spokesperson said.

As Cooper continues to recover, the family says doctors still don’t know how fully his mobility will return and « what limitations we will live with all his life. »

« We know we are so grateful for his survival and for the many kind words we continue to receive, including from everyone working to help Cooper and others affected recover from this nightmare. »

A verified GoFundMe has been set up to help with Cooper’s medical expenses.

CNN’s Christina Maxouris, Adrienne Broaddus and Ashley Killough contributed to this report.

cnn en2fr2en

Back to top button