Updated: 11/24/2013 6:07 PM KSTP.com By: Cassie Hart
Amazing progress is being made by two of the three young survivors of a car that plunged into a St. Louis Park pond on Thursday. Five children were trapped underwater. Two have died. Three others are fighting in the hospital.
The community prayed at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in North Minneapolis Sunday morning. They are hoping for a full recovery for the three children who remain in the hospital.
After just a few days, some huge strides are being made by the youngest child and the 5-year-old girl.
The family's spokesperson said on Saturday, the two girls are even more responsive than they were on Friday. Attorney Rick Petry said 5-year-old Amani Guerrido and 1-year-old Aliyana Rennie can now squeeze a finger and nod their head when asked questions.
Their eyes are open and they can wiggle their toes, he said. They are small movements, but the significance is monumental.
"That was so huge, and such a relief to know this child was showing visible signs of improvement, knew people were there, recognized mom and grandma's voice. Just joy, just joy,” said Petry.
As for the third surviving child, 6-year-old Zarihana Rennie, she's holding her ground. Officials say she's neither improved nor declined.
We also now know the official cause of death for 5-year-old Zenavia Rennie and 7-year-old Alarious Guerrido. According to the Hennepin County medical examiner, they were stuck in the sinking car in icy water for too long, and both died as a result of drowning.
Click here to read the 911 call transcript and a joint statement released by the police and fire departments.
A fund has been established to help the family of the victims cover funeral and medical expenses. So far, 136 contributors have donated more than $8500.
The family is in the process of setting up a CaringBridge website as well.