5-year-old shooting survivor gets to meet his neighborhood heroes

Wounded boy meets neighborhood heroes

ATLANTA -- It’s every kid’s dream to meet their hero, and for one remarkable Atlanta boy, he got the chance to do just that, thanks to help from 11Alive.

A few weeks ago, 5-year-old Clifford "C.J." Harris was struck by a stray bullet while he was inside his home at the Forest Cove Apartments in southwest Atlanta. Police weren’t able to make any arrests then and are still looking for the shooter.

PHOTOS | Boy shot in his bedroom

The incident left him hospitalized, but like a survivor, he bounced back, and on Monday, C.J. was there to greet the real-life neighborhood heroes from the Atlanta Fire Department – heroes that C.J. wants to be when he grows up.

"He told me once that he wants to be a firefighter,” C.J.’s aunt Laterese Johnson told 11Alive. With that knowledge 11Alive helped arrange the gathering. Reporter Neima Abdulahi was at Fire Station 10 for the special moment.

PHOTOS | C.J. meets his neighborhood heroes

His family was thankful he could be surrounded by positive role models. But the role models were equally honored to meet the young survivor.

"When you have a strong kid like C.J. recover from such a traumatic event, and talk about how he wants to serve the community as a fireman, that makes us feel really good about the job that we do," said Sgt. Cortez Stafford with the Atlanta Fire Department.

C.J. and his family were overwhelmed with the warm welcome, and at the end, he walked away with a goodie bag and new friends.

They're hoping that one day, when C.J. becomes a firefighter, he can look back on this experience as an inspirational moment.

(© 2016 WXIA)


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