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Valley burn victim released from hospital

PHOENIX – It was a happy scene at a valley hospital today as a 13-year-old boy went home after a nearly six month long ordeal.

David Soria arrived at the Grossman Burn Center at Phoenix St. Luke’s Medical Center in January after being badly burned in a backyard fire.

“He sustained flame burns to 71 percent of his total body surface area,” said Doctor Robert Bonillas, Soria’s plastic surgeon. “These burns were pretty bad. They were full thickness burns, which means they were all layers of the skin.”

Bonillas said Soria needed round-the-clock medical care.

“[Soria] did very well,” he said. “We were able to save his life. He underwent 12 operations. Now, he’s being discharged home after spending several months in the hospital.”

Even though Soria is well enough to go home, Bonillas said he still has a long road to recovery.

“[Soria] will start to develop scar contractions and disfigurements and such,” he said. “He will need the care of a plastic and reconstructive surgeon to bring him back to his pre-injury condition functionally, cosmetically, and even mental as well.”

But for now, Soria is looking forward to getting back to life. He wants to play paintball with his family, and is looking forward to watching an upcoming skateboard competition.

Today, he went home from the hospital the same way he arrived — in a fire truck. His mother, Sara Soria, said this time it was for fun.

“For [David], it’s like he’s ok now,” said Sara. “For him to actually enjoy it, to see it, live it. It’s like, ‘Ok, we’re done. Let’s go.'”