Injured boy's Christmas wish

SOUTH PHILADELPHIA - November 21, 2008 - He's been there for a week now, and the pain medication makes his speech fuzzy.

Last Friday, as Taleem was walking to basketball practice, he crossed Wynnefield and 53rd when a car hit him straight on. Both of his legs were broken, he suffered a concussion and a partial neck fracture.

He's already had two surgeries, and a collapsed lung.

He may not walk for another three months, and that could mean Taleem could spend the holidays in the hospital. That's because his parents aren't able to get someone who can't walk up to their apartment.

"Our apartment is on the 4th floor, it's not wheelchair accessible. The doors are too narrow, the elevators are too narrow, and we can't get him upstairs," said Taleem's mother, Talia Thomas-Roberts.

Taleem's mother has four other young children. Her husband is not bringing in enough money to cover the medical bills, let alone Thanksgiving or Christmas.

If she and her husband cannot come up with the money to move to a house that is wheelchair accesible, Taleem will have to go to a children's home.

"It's going to be past tough right now. All our money is going to the hospital, Christmas is on the backburner. It's tough to tell a five year old, a seven year old 'No Christmas this year," Thomas-Roberts said. "I don't want to tell them."

The family, especially Taleem, is hoping someone can help them so he can spend the holidays where he belongs.

At home.

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