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Toddler severely burned in house fire slowly on his way to recovery

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Posted at 9:28 PM, Jan 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-05 07:33:22-05

A Tulsa toddler, badly burned in a house fire last month, continues to fight each day as he undergoes multiple surgeries.

Fire officials confirm  the fire was an accident, and that 2-year-old Alex Stephenson was either playing with, or tipped over a can of gasoline onto a water heater, igniting the blaze.

On Dec. 1, 2016, the Stephenson family's world forever changed. Baby Alex was flown to a burn hospital in Galveston where he began getting treatment for burns covering 80 percent of his body.

Looking back isn't an option.

"Our life is not at all what it was," Amanda Stephenson, Alex's mother said. "Everything is different."

This is a new life, a new way of living, and it's just the beginning for the 2-year-old.

"He is very strong willed and he is very active, so that will all help him recover," Amanda said.

Although his burns are severe, second and third degree, it's not about the tragedy, but the fight to move forward, and Alex is on his way.

"All the doctors and nurses we have talked to say the more stubborn they are, the better," Amanda said.

That fateful day, the 1600 block of east 53rd street filled with fire crews, an ambulance, smoke, and onlookers. The devastating news o Alex's accident circulated - many began to pray.

"Everybody has been encouraging and loving and offering prayer and motivation and it is incredibly uplifting," Amanda said.

Those thoughts and prayers are building a community of love around Alex and his family, which is helpful as Alex endures constant care. He's undergone nine surgeries and lost some of his fingers and toes.

"They have put grafts of his skin - auto grafts- on his chest his back and one patch of the ankle," Amanda said. "And half of the other leg past the ankle and his eyelids."

Alex recently battled an infection, but overcame it. Alex's mother and father plan to be by Alex's side through it all. They moved to Galveston and will finally be able to hold their baby boy, once again as he heals.

Doctors say being so young will help Alex adapt. The Stephenson's think he's turning a corner, a positive one, but still ask everyone to keep sending well wishes.

To help the family you can send them postcards addressed to Amanda Stephenson at c/o Care Management, Shriner's Hospital, 815 Market St., Galveston, TX 77550.

You can also donate here: https://www.gofundme.com/stephensons-fire-recovery-fund