TAMPA, FL -- The parents of a boy injured by a grenade say he is lucky to be alive.
Edward Weise's mother says the 9-year-old's eyes, nose, jaw and pallet were shattered in the accident.
She says you would never guess it from the looks of his pictures in the hospital.
Edward's parents addressed the media outside of Tampa General Hospital Friday, with their heads down and their hearts lower.
They described the moments before a grenade exploded in their son's hands.
"He had it in his hand and I said put it down, and by the time I told him to put it down it had already blown up," said his mother Annemarie Weise.
Doctors spent 12 hours reattaching Edward Weise III's face.
Today, his parents say they are grateful he only has a small scar down the middle of his face.
"I was scared to go see him after the surgery because of what I had seen prior," said Annemarie Weise.
The boy's father also reacted.
"It's pretty amazing," said Edward Weise.
But the two are most impressed with the other 16 hours doctors worked at saving the boy's left thumb, pinky and ring finger.
Doctors are restricting the 9-year-old's arm use right now in a unique experiment.
They placed a small incinsion in the boy's stomache, making a pouch, then putting the hand inside to heal.
"It is supposed to help with the blood vessels and to keep it from getting infected," said Annemarie Weise.
The boy's father, Edward Weise Jr., says he feels beyond miserable.
He admits he placed 3 empty fire cracker duds in the grenade years ago on July 4th.
He expects criminal charges, but is grateful law enforcement is sensitive to the timing of an arrest.
"I got to be with him now. I think he needs me to be with him too," said Edward Weise Jr.
A lakeland restaurant called the End Zone is throwing a fundraiser for the family Saturday.
There will be pony rides, monster truck rides and live entertainment. The event is from 1 to 5 pm.
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