Crime

Zander, who 'stole the hearts' of hospital staff, returns home

JACKSON COUNTY -- Zander Saucier's family is happy to have him home after the 3-year-old spent a week in intensive care. Now, they just want him to heal. And they want the family to get back to a normal routine.

Zander was released Sunday from USA Children's and Women's Hospital in Mobile, where was airlifted from Singing River Hospital, suffering from what officials said were critical wounds from a beating April 10. He'd remained on a ventilator most of the week.

Zander's father, Nathan Blake McCrory, 24, is accused of burning Zander's arm and hitting him, resulting in a collapsed lung and lacerated liver, according to affidavits. McCrory is being held without bond at the Jackson County jail on charges of felony child abuse and marijuana cultivation. A preliminary hearing is set for May 9.

McCrory told his mother her grandson fell down the stairs and she dialed 911 for an ambulance. According to Jackson County Sheriff Mike Ezell said McCrory was arrested at his home, inside which deputies discovered marijuana, resulting in McCrory's arrest on the drug charge.

Zander stole the hearts of staff at the Mobile hospital during his stay there.

Doctors and nurses applauded Friday when he walked on his own for the first time. Jimmy Spears, a relative Zander refers to as Unc, said nurses even came out of rooms where they were assisting other patients to cheer the boy's accomplishments.

On Sunday, doctors released Zander, who is now home with his mother, Emily Saucier.

The family has received support to help with medical expenses.

A gofundme.com account was set up, and #TeamZander T-shirts are for sale. In addition, several businesses have helped the family with food during their stay in Mobile.

On Saturday, the Gulfport Domino's will donate 20 percent of its sales to Zander for anyone who mentions Zander's name when placing an order.

Donations can also be made in the name of Zander Saucier at The First bank branch at O'Neal Road and U.S. 49.

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