Patients Return To Gladewater Children's Center - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

3/5/05-Longview

Patients Return To Gladewater Children's Center

A joyful reunion for some special needs patients in Gladewater, as they return to a center they call home. A group of caregivers and parents anxiously waited in Gladewater Saturday morning, after nearly 3 months of living away from home. Patients from Truman W. Smith Children's Care Center finally came home.

"Probably one of the most exciting days in my life having them here is what we worked so hard for 2 months," said center administrator Ken Williams.

The fire that ripped through the center in December, forced the center to disperse patients who suffer mental and physical disabilities, to other east Texas hospitals, which made their arrival Saturday so joyful.

"Whoo, it's just been rough, I'm just so happy to be back home" said patient Shawn Hancock.

"For all of our kids to be home in their rooms and whatever normal is, we're going to get back to normal in a few days , so it's just been wonderful to get our babies back," said Truman Smith teacher Sky Holcomb.

You could see it in the faces workers and patients and parents, they were thrilled to have everyone back where they called home.

"It's wonderful, all of the excitement in the air all the staff ready to get the kids back, the kids are ready , the place looks great," said Karen Smith who's son Jason is a truman patient.

Familiar surroundings, familiar faces and most important, people who love them.

"Just seeing some of the faces as they got off the bus, the smiles and jumping for joy out of their wheelchairs, i think they know this is home" says Williams.

The kids will begin school sessions next week.

Bob Hallmark, reporting.

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