Community rallying for boy injured in car crash

LOS FRESNOS — It was supposed to be a normal day.

Steven Pena, 8, had just finished his day at school and was picked up by his mother.

He strapped himself into the seat and was excited about his afternoon with his family.

They were on their way to the doctor’s office for his sister’s normal therapy session.

But soon after leaving Laureles Elementary a sports utility vehicle veered into their lane and crashed into their car.

The crash happened about 4:45 p.m. Feb. 6 when an early-model gray Chevrolet Tahoe collided with his mother’s Hyundai Accent near the intersection of FM 803 and Iowa Gardens Road.

The driver of the Tahoe fled the scene on foot. Investigators said yesterday they had no updates on the case or the whereabouts of the driver.

The crash left Steven suffering from a severe spinal cord injury and organ damage.

Since then, Steven has raised nearly $10,000 with a GoFundMe account.

“Doctors told us that he had a 50/50 chance of survival,” said Gilberto Puente, 26, Steven’s cousin. “But through their hard work and God’s grace, they were able to stabilize Steven by stopping all the internal bleeding.”

Steven was later transported to a hospital in Houston for treatment.

Yesterday, Steve was back in surgery for retaining urine in his bladder and to help filter it through his kidneys.

But the long-term news isn’t good for the boy.

Steven’s parents have been told by doctors that Steven will not be able to walk again.

Since Monday, he has been conscious and aware he is recovering from the car crash. But he has not yet been told he will never walk again.

Puente said Steven excelled at sports and enjoyed spending time at the park with his family and running with his cousins.

“It’s been one thing after another,” Puente said. “It’s been really tough.”

Family members have had to travel to Houston to see him.

Puente said doctors recommend Steven heal from his internal injuries before they operate on his spinal cord.

“We ask for your prayers,” Puente said. “Steven had some complications with his recovery but is currently stable.”