Girl rescued from debris starts walking after two years

Girl rescued from debris starts walking after two years

Girl rescued from debris starts walking after two years

A 9-year-old girl, who was rescued from the rubble of an eight-story building that collapsed in Istanbul in 2019, has finally started walking again after two years and 55 surgeries.

Some 21 people were killed, and 14 others were injured when a residential block collapsed in the city’s Kartal district on Feb. 4, 2019.

Rescuers pulled Azra Havva Tekgöz, who was 7 years old at the time, alive from the wreck of a residential building 19 hours after it collapsed.

Miraculously surviving the disaster, the girl suffered severe injuries and was left with a badly crushed leg. Thankfully, after undergoing hours of tiring surgery at a local hospital, her leg was saved. Azra was later discharged and has been receiving physical therapy since then as part of her treatment. She underwent 55 medical operations in two years.

With the help of continuous treatment, the girl is now able to stand and take small steps.

Azra had to take her school lessons at home due to her treatment in the first year. This year, she is in grade second and is studying online due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“I have not been able to sit in school desks yet because of the treatment. I want to study. I want to become a ballerina one day and teach kids ballet,” she said.

Azra still experiences difficulty moving her joints, and it is likely for her to continue receiving treatment until she turns 15.

Meanwhile, Azra’s father, Fethi Ahmet Tekgöz, complained that two years had passed since the collapse, but no one has been charged still.

“The public officials of the period and the contractor should be penalized. We will follow the case,” he said.