Martha Childress doing "remarkably well" in recovery - - Columbia, South Carolina |

Martha Childress doing "remarkably well" in recovery

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Martha Childress Martha Childress

The 18-year-old University of South Carolina student paralyzed after she was hit with a stray bullet in Five Points remains in recovery at an Atlanta rehabilitation clinic.

Martha Childress' ongoing recovery was documented by her uncle, Jim Carpenter, in an email sent to WIS.

In that email, Jim says Martha is doing "remarkably well in her physical therapy" and learning to strengthen her muscles as she prepares to begin her new life in a wheelchair.

"At the end of the day, she is worn out. The doctors seem to think that her previous good health has been an asset to her," said Carpenter.

Martha has even made a new friend in the rehab center, according to Carpenter.

Carpenter says Martha has been moved by all the prayers and thoughts being sent in her direction.

"She seems a little overwhelmed at being the object of such concern and affection; but she's very grateful," said Carpenter.

Martha has also received several gifts from complete strangers who have heard her story. For example, an older woman who joined Martha's sorority in the 1940s gave the 18-year-old her old sorority pin.

"When she heard Martha's story, she decided that Martha should be the one to receive her pin.  She also gave Martha her 50-year sorority membership pin and sorority literature and news articles from the 1940s," said Carpenter. "Martha was quite moved by the gifts."

In the end, Carpenter says Martha has a great attitude and is making great progress despite her circumstances.

Childress was critically wounded after police say 21-year-old Michael Juan Smith opened fire and missed two men he was believed to be shooting at following an argument.

Smith was charged with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime, and possession of a stolen pistol.

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