1-year-old girl burned by coffee now back home


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The family of a 19-month-old girl badly burned by a cup of hot coffee says they're happy the injuries weren't worse and that the girl is back home.

The girl was flown to the burn unit at UF Health Gainesville on Monday after being severely burned, but now she's playful, happy and it appears to be doing OK.

Her family said doctors think she'll make a complete recovery.

"I turned around at the opposite counter to get her the other piece of the Pop-Tart and at that time she screamed," the girl's grandmother said. "She had pulled the cup of coffee and the placemat off of the counter."

It was in the blink of an eye, the grandmother said. She was watching the toddler, whom she nicknamed "Beautiful," when the unexpected happened and her hot coffee spilled onto the girl's neck, shoulder and chest.

The girl's mom and grandmother started to drive her to the hospital but got stuck in traffic. Jolene Carlton was in another car and sprung into action.

"They said that their baby was burned, so I told them to pull over and ended up calling 911," Carlton said.

Rescuers flew the child to the burn unit in Gainesville, where she spent two days. She went home Tuesday night with bandages on her wounds.

"The girl is doing great. She has been sent home. They said that she would have a good recovery," her grandmother said. "They don't expect any scars. She is up and playing, she's not running a fever, she's not sick, she's eating like she always does. She's back to her old self."

"We are lucky. We have been blessed," the grandmother added. "This is another prayer that has been answered by God and only by God."

The girl's family said it's a blessing this wasn't worse. It's a morning they'll never forget, and they'll forever be thankful for the Good Samaritan who stopped to help.

"Her mother and I myself were in a panic mode because we had a child that was burned," the grandmother said. "And the girl, she was thinking clearly. We weren't. And I really want to thank her because she was God-sent."

As the 1-year-old recovers at home, her family wants other parents to be careful.

"They need to really walk around their houses and see what kind of things they have that are dangerous in their house," the grandmother said. "The simplest thing can cause a problem in a split second."

The girl's mother and grandmother said they thought their homes were baby-proof, but after this happened, they went back and looked at every single thing they had to make sure it wouldn't cause another accident.

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office investigated the case and said it was accidental.