Heber City teen hit in a crosswalk gets warm welcome home

Dec 6, 2023, 5:50 PM | Updated: Dec 7, 2023, 12:09 pm

HEBER CITY — There was a warm homecoming Wednesday for a teen from Heber who was hit by a car in a crosswalk in late September.

Ava’s Saunders was welcomed home from Primary Children’s Hospital by a police escort from several agencies including Park City Police Department.

#Stop for Students

The Wasatch High School Cheer team was lining her driveway when she arrived. Fourteen-year-old Ava is on the team.

Ava was hit by a car back on Sept. 27 as she tried to cross Main Street in Heber City. She was in the ICU until Oct. 17.

Heber teen in ICU after being hit at new crosswalk

She suffered a broken pelvis and right leg femur fracture. She also had a traumatic brain injury.

Her mom, Marie Saunders, said doctors didn’t expect her to make the progress she has.

“Where she came from and where is now is truly a miracle,” Marie Saunders said.

But now she’s walking with the help of a walker. Her parents say she’ll need to maintain “2 feet on the ground,” meaning no jumping – or cheering – for a year.

“She loves cheer and so she will be two feet on the ground until doctors clear her so that is going to be the hardest part of the journey for her,” Marie Saunders said.

“She already wants to get right back to flipping and twisting and we’re going to need all their help to make sure we keep her safe,” Matt Saunders, Ava’s dad, said.

The school’s principal and two assistant principals also came to greet Ava, and many neighbors came out as well.

Ava’s parents say there’s still physical therapy, speech therapy and lots of healing, but Ava is just really happy to be home.

Her parents said that the love and support from the community have been amazing.

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Heber City teen hit in a crosswalk gets warm welcome home