Family of boy severely injured by drunken driver talks with 10News as they face biggest setback yet

Izaiah Wallis rushed to emergency surgery on Wed.

SAN DIEGO - A boy who was severely injured in a drunken driving crash was rushed to Rady Children's Hospital on Wednesday night for emergency surgery. Baby Izaiah Wallis, as he is known, has been in the intensive care unit, surrounded by family ever since.

On Friday night, his family told 10News there are no plans for him to go home anytime soon.

Now on a feeding tube and a ventilator with a colostomy and tracheotomy tube in place, 4-year-old Izaiah is back in the ICU fighting for his life once again.

"It's hard for us and we just want to cry and cry but we can't he's watching us there and he's the one in pain," said Lucy Verde, Izaiah's mother.

Izaiah's struggle began at 18 months old, when he was left partially blind, brain damaged and paralyzed when an unlicensed 17-year-old Noe Hernandez, who was drunk and high on pot, lost control of his SUV on Lake Boulevard in Oceanside and plowed into Izaiah's stroller and his grandfather who was pushing him.

"Hearing him call me mom, you know my little daughter can do that, but I miss his voice," said Verde. "We haven't been able to hear his voice since then."

Hernandez faced a maximum of 12 years in prison, but since he could not be tried as an adult, he was handed down a sentence of 480 days in a juvenile detention camp.

Even though Hernandez has apologized to the family for what he did, Izaiah's parents say neither Hernandez or his family have offered to lift a finger to help them since the crash.

The crash has been life-changing, as Izaiah has been in and out of the hospital dozens of times. This time, though, is their biggest setback yet.

"Pretty much what happened was some of his intestines were twisted up inside and they had to cut about 7 inches of them out," said Jacob Wallis, Izaiah's father.

To make matters worse, the family's wheelchair-accessible van with more than 200,000 miles on it has stopped running and they had to wait on a family member to give them a ride to the hospital Wednesday night.

Izaiah's parents, who are both 24 years old, say their struggle – both financial and emotional – is never ending.

"Even if we do go home soon it's still going to be a struggle because he's still going to be in pain and you know he's still going to have that incision there and it's going to be a while before he fully heals from it," said Wallis.

Even when they leave, the family still has no transportation for Izaiah.

They say they are desperately in need of a reliable, fuel-efficient, wheelchair-accessible van since the one they have is too far gone to be repaired.

If you would like to help, visit Passion4kids.org.

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