TEMPLE, Texas (KWTX) Corden Fidler, 4, who survived a shooting that left his mother and grandmother dead got some surprise visitors as he continues to battle back from the severe injuries he suffered.
The principal of the boy’s school and one of the first police officers on the scene of the Dec. 20 shooting visited the youngster Thursday at McLane Children’s Hospital in Temple.
“I know Corden was so happy to hear these two!” the boy’s stepmother, Alexandra Fidler, said in a Facebook post.
Corden and his mother, Shelly Fidler, 36, a Belton ISD teacher, were gunned down by Fidler’s estranged husband as they left their home early in the morning on Dec. 20 in Temple.
Fidler died at the scene and the boy, who was shot at least four times, including once in the head, was critically injured.
His grandmother, Sherry Gray, 64, was shot to death inside the home.
The boy had a good day Thursday, his stepmother said in the Facebook post.
“Corden was pretty active as far as movement, moving his right arm and opening his eyes about halfway in response to hearing familiar voices,” she wrote.
“Urologists say they will take out his ureter stint on Monday, and his nephrostomy tubes will follow a few days after.”
“Neurosurgery says if he has a good weekend they will begin the gradual wean off of sedatives that we attempted two weeks ago,” she said.
“Plastic surgery should be in, in the coming days to evaluate if he can have his bite block taken out so he can close his mouth and his poor swollen tongue can heal.”
Earlier in the week, Corden had a successful tracheotomy and additional surgery to repair his head wound, she said in the post.
A GoFundMe effort to raise money to help offset the family’s expenses had raised more than $31,000.
Matthew Splittgerber had parked down the street from the house early on Dec. 20 and evidently ambushed the boy and his mother before entering the home.
He opened fire as a school bus was pulling up to the house, law enforcement sources said.
No other children were aboard.
When officers arrived they found the woman and the boy lying in the front yard and heard gunfire, police said.
More shots were fired as the officers tried to evacuate the two.
Residents of adjacent residences were evacuated as a SWAT team was called in and attempted unsuccessfully to establish contact with Matthew Splittgerber, who was inside the home.
He refused to communicate and refused to come out.
As a SWAT team made entry into the home, officers heard several gunshots and then one final shot, police said.
Officers found Splittgerber and Gray dead of gunshot wounds.
The man's wound was self-inflicted.
A temporary protective order was in place against Matthew Splittsgerber.
Shelly Fidler sought and received the temporary order the day before the shooting against her estranged husband, citing family violence as the grounds for the order and listing stalking and harassing texts as evidence that she and her son were in danger.