Heartwarming moment seven-year-old Virginia girl dances in The Nutcracker after her feet had to be reattached when they were severed in horrific car accident
A seven-year-old girl performed a Christmas miracle by dancing in The Nutcracker after recovering from an accident that left her without feet just months earlier.
For the past two years, Aubrey Scaletta and her twin sister Grayson have performed together in the classic Christmas ballet The Nutcracker in Roanoke, Virginia.
But this year it was unclear whether Aubrey would be able to join her sister on stage after she suffered a serious accident just eight months earlier.
The brutal accident left the young girl without feet and had to undergo surgery six times to reattach her feet. ABC reported.
Aubrey was determined to participate in the production for the third year in a row and even managed to perform without a wheelchair after months of doubting whether she would ever walk again.
A seven-year-old girl performed a Christmas miracle by dancing at The Nutcracker after recovering from an accident that left her without feet just months earlier
For the past two years, Aubrey Scaletta and her twin sister Grayson have performed together in the classic Christmas ballet The Nutcracker in Roanoke, Virginia
This year it was unclear whether Aubrey would be able to join her sister on stage after suffering a serious accident just eight months earlier
“This is her and her sister's third year, so I think when she started doing it… she had no doubt that it was happening,” Lauren Scaletta told Good Morning America.
“She was in a wheelchair, but she really wanted to do the parts with her feet, so when she was able to do it with a walker, she was just ecstatic.”
Aubrey's very supportive and loyal twin sister Grayson, who their parents described as her “protector,” stopped dancing during Aubrey's recovery.
When Aubrey finally started dancing again, Grayson joined her too.
The incident occurred as tragedy struck when Aubrey's father Daniel Scaletta was driving her home from gymnastics in May.
The young girl was playing with a tie-down strap, which is usually used to tie down cargo. She had one end tied around her feet and the other end flew out the window and wrapped around the axle of the truck.
According to her father, Aubrey suffered enormous pain as a result of the bizarre accident. “There was a loud bang and the whole truck shook and Aubrey screamed, 'I'm bleeding,'” Scaletta recalled. “I turned around and looked and saw her injuries.”
Scaletta was only three miles from a hospital, so he took Aubrey there immediately. But due to the severity of her injuries, she was airlifted to a larger hospital.
Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital had a pediatric trauma center, where Aubrey underwent initial reattachment surgery the same day.
The brutal accident left the young girl without feet and had to undergo surgery six times to reattach her feet
Determined to participate in the production for the third year in a row – Aubrey even managed to perform without a wheelchair after months of wondering if she would ever walk again
The medical staff said that preparing for such an operation would typically take days and that they did it all in 15 minutes.
“We had to operate quickly to restore blood flow and reattach her feet to her legs,” said Dr. Peter Apel, the orthopedic surgeon who led the operation. “If we had waited even a few hours, the feet would have died and certainly been amputated.”
The first surgery to fix her feet was successful, but until October it was unclear whether the results would last.
Aubrey's mother said: 'After the first operation there was a lot of doubt whether her right leg would make it as it had suffered a lot of damage to the veins. And as we went along, I thought, “Okay, we got through this hurdle. We got through this hurdle. We're looking better.”
Her father said there was uncertainty all summer about Aubrey's recovery. 'If you had asked me in September if we would be where we are now, I would never have guessed. These past few months have been amazing in her healing process,” Scaletta said.
Aubrey underwent six rounds of surgery, including multiple skin grafts to use her healthy skin to cover the skin she lost or damaged in the accident.
She started physical therapy in October and was finally able to put some weight back on her feet for the first time since the accident eight months ago.
The seven-year-old was finally able to return to school in the fall, where she used a wheelchair to get around.
Initially she had casts on both legs, but eventually she had the bandages removed. Aubrey's mother Lauren Scaletta said her daughter became nervous because she was afraid she had to go back to school and her peers would see her legs.
Aubrey's parents assured her that she had nothing to fear. “Your scars are just a part of you.”
Being able to perform in The Nutcracker was an incredible moment for Aubrey after many months of uncertainty and fear, her father said. 'I think it was a big confidence booster for her.
Her father said there was uncertainty all summer about Aubrey's recovery. 'If you had asked me in September if we would be where we are now, I would never have guessed. These past few months have been amazing in her healing process,” Scaletta said
“She loves it, and we're very grateful that she was able to get back to being there and dancing and doing what she loves.”
“As twins, they were separated for the first time at Aubrey's hospital, so that was a big adjustment,” he said.
“To see them dancing together again was just incredible.”
'It's hard to say you can take a breath and relax because we're constantly worrying, but it's amazing that we can get to the point where we can focus on Christmas, enjoy it and have this time together ', said Mr Scaletta said.
'Everything had to go right to be where we are now.'
Aubrey will need more surgeries in the future — once she finishes growing, doctors said.