A 7-year-old boy who was hit by a car while looking at holiday lights with his family in Ocean Beach was released from the hospital Wednesday but still has a long recovery ahead.
Caleb De Leon was walking on the north side of Newport Avenue after 6 p.m. Monday when he stepped off the curb and was hit. Despite his injuries, He still had the strength to crawl to the side of the road.
"I saw him crawling over to the car that was parked in front of me and he just looked up at me and said "I'm OK, thank the lord, I'm OK," Caleb's father Daniel said.
Daniel said he ran to Caleb and saw a bone in his leg sticking out through his skin.
"I look down and see the tibia is sticking out of his leg," Daniel said. "I remember falling to my knees and holding his face so he wouldn't look down. I told him 'You're amazing, you're a champion, you're going to get through this.'"
Caleb, who is visiting with family from Arkansas, now has a metal bar and several pins holding his leg bone together. His new hardware and healing bones are wrapping up in a bright blue cast.
He'll have plenty of physical therapy along his road to recovery, and the team at Rady Children's Hospital is putting him in contact with specialists in his home state.
Daniel said the injury also took a toll on Caleb's 9-year-old brother who saw the whole thing happen.
"He's watching his brother and he saw the injuries, it just traumatized him," Daniel said.
Caleb and his brother will see a counselor, their father said.
The driver of the car that hit Caleb stayed at the scene.
The San Diego Police Traffic Division is investigating the incident but preliminary information indicates the driver was not under the influence of alcohol at the time of the collision.