(WJW) — The FOX 8 I-Team has found a victim of a hit-and-run doing something her family thought might never happen again: walking.
The family of Ayana Barkley considers every step she takes a miracle. Video shows her taking small steps with assistance.
Three years ago on Cleveland’s southeast side, a hit-and-run driver plowed into the young mother known as ‘Ya-Ya’, leaving her with permanent injuries.
In fact, that driver left her for dead.
This Thanksgiving weekend, her family is especially grateful to see her fighting back and starting to walk again.
“You’re gonna make me cry, now. Oh lord. … It was like watching her all over again as a baby when she first started walking,” said Ayana’s father, Michael Barkley.
Cell phone video shows Ayana working hard to begin to take steps again, and medical staff can be heard encouraging her: “Come on girl. C’mon, you can do it.”
We asked Michael, “You didn’t think she’d ever walk again?”
He answered, “Not only walk again, but to actually live.”
“That was from the prayers of some of the greatest pastors that came down and prayed for her,” he added. “People all over the country, from the prayer lines. And, we’re just very, very thankful.”
So many people have been watching this case for a recovery, but also for justice.
The I-Team checked and still, no one has ever been punished.
Two years ago, court records showed investigators had three suspects. We took a new look to see whatever happened with that and found the case never moved forward. There wasn’t enough evidence.
Michael said he will never give up his fight for justice. He holds out hope someone will eventually call in a tip to investigators that leads to a conviction.
But, for now, what’s most important to him is seeing his daughter fight to prove everyone wrong with her recovery.
“I just ask everybody for their prayers. And just thank God for your children. Thank God for your brothers and your sisters,” Michael said.
“I am so thankful. I am so thankful.”