A Special St. Mary’s Story

In October 2007, a Yemeni family of four young girls and their mom arrived in New York to reunite with their dad.  After just days together in their new apartment, a gas explosion ripped through the walls of their home on 119th Street in Harlem.

Alouf Hassan, the 29-year-old mother, later succumbed to her injuries.  Sisters Duaa, Twka, Lina and Afaf all sustained serious burns over 60% to 90% of their bodies. Following treatment at a New York City Burn Center all of the girls required further care. 

Three girls were discharged home – to a homeless shelter – and their father Rassas Al Gaithi where they received St. Mary’s home care services.  The most severely injured, 6 year-old Duaa, came to St. Mary’s Hospital for Children.  Duaa was hospitalized for more than 10 months while she underwent extensive therapy and rehabilitation that led to a miraculous recovery. 

St. Mary’s helped the family find a permanent home where Duaa could rejoin them and heal together both physically and emotionally.  Duaa continues to receive care at St. Mary’s – in the after school program – where she will continue to receive therapeutic services to aid her amazing recovery.