LOMA LINDA (CBSLA.com) — An 8-year-old boy is making a miraculous recovery after he was mauled by two pit bull mixes in Corona last month.

James Hernandez was playing in a cul-de-sac near his home Sept. 14 when he was confronted by the animals that had escaped from their owners’ yard.

James’ parents, Shelley and Ernie, said the dogs’ owners actually came upon the scene and called the pit bulls off the boy.

The young boy was then able to give the neighbors his address, which alerted his parents.

“He wasn’t wearing any clothing,” said Shelley. “His helmet was completely ripped off. His head was split open ear-to-ear. His ear was hanging. I didn’t even think he was even breathing at that point.”

James’ parents said he showed incredible bravery.

“He was breathing. He was conscious. He was responsive. That gave me comfort,” said Ernie.

“He heard me crying and he said, ‘I’m OK, Mommy.’ He was responsive, but his face was away from me, and I just lost it,” said Shelley.

James’ recovery hasn’t been an easy process.

After he was initially released from the hospital, he had to be re-admitted at Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital.

The family, however, said James should be out of the hospital in the next week, and he should completely recover in the next six months to a year.

Meantime, the dogs were put down. Their owners were cited, but won’t face any jail time.

“I have mixed feelings on that because I feel like, they did the right thing in getting us. They could have just left the scene, and he wouldn’t have made it. So I am thankful,” said Shelley.


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