NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WSFX) - "If you don't believe in miracles, there is one right here," Hannah Batchelor said, holding her 2-year-old son, Bradley, who's suffered more trauma than most people will in their entire lifetime.
Bradley was born premature — just 1 pound, 4 ounces — and wasn't expected to survive. But he did and lived a carefree life up to his first birthday.
Then, an unthinkable tragedy tore his family apart.
New Hanover County investigators said his father, David Batchelor, got high and tried to kill the entire family. Investigators said he went after Bradley first, stabbing the little boy repeatedly in the stomach with a kitchen knife.
Arrest warrants reveal the knife cut Bradley from his stomach all the way through to his spinal cord. Just 1 year old at the time of the attack, Bradley's stomach and spleen stopped working.
"There is no way to describe that feeling to see your son hooked up to all these tubes and all these things I just can't help him with," Batchelor explained, reliving the long night in the hospital. Bradley spent over two months in the hospital.
One year later, we checked in on Bradley's recovery and it's safe to say his progress caught everyone in the newsroom off guard.
On a cold January morning, Bradley bundled up and tried out just about every piece of playground equipment. He showed no signs of trauma, not a care in the world.
"Just to sit there and know you have this little boy there that is full of strength and that's all I held on to is the hope he would pull through and here we are and he did," Batchelor said, holding Bradley during a short break from the playground.
The recovery is nothing short of miraculous. Bradley's mother, hesitant to talk about the tragedy at first, decided this story can serve as an inspiration to any family.
"It's encouraging and it's all full of hope," Batchelor said, clutching her son. "This story seems sad in the beginning but it's really full of hope and happiness."