Tenn. toddler to get surgery to help with cerebral palsy

His mom hopes he'll be walking on his own by Halloween next year

Angler Davis and mom Ashley (Photo: WKRN) and Angler in his 2016 Halloween costume (Photo: Davis family)
Angler Davis and mom Ashley (Photo: WKRN) and Angler in his 2016 Halloween costume (Photo: Davis family)

MOORE COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – A local boy with cerebral palsy made headlines last Halloween when his parents included his walker in his Halloween costume.

Angler Davis’s parents said they wanted him to feel comfortable with his walker, which inspired his costume – Carl, an elderly balloon salesman, from the Disney movie “Up!”

This year the 3-year-old was prepared to be a police officer — but he didn’t go trick-or-treating because he’s in St. Louis preparing for surgery at a Children’s Hospital.

The procedure, called a selective dorsal rhizotomy, will sever a nerve in his back that causes his legs to become tight, allowing him to walk more easily.

Angler's costume for Halloween 2015. (Courtesy: The Davis Family)
Angler’s costume, Halloween 2015. (Courtesy: The Davis Family)

“It’s becoming pretty popular in kids that have cerebral palsy like Angler does to help their motor skills,” explained mom Ashley Davis.

She told our sister station WKRN she and her husband applied for the surgery last summer and just recently received word that the request was accepted.

“It’s almost just surreal,” Davis told WKRN. “What is happening? Are we really doing this? We’re just so excited.”

Angler’s mom says she expects her son will be walking on his own in a year.

“We’ve always been very blessed that his cerebral palsy is really mild,” said Ashley Davis. “He can do a lot of things and we’re thankful for that, but we cannot wait to see him just run around the house and do what he wants to do without us having to take him everywhere or without his walker attached to him.

Angler’s surgery takes place Tuesday morning.