Little girl recovering from traumatic brain injury gets special visit from 'Queen Elsa'

VALHALLA, New York (WABC) -- A little girl recovering from a terrible accident got a special surprise Wednesday.

7-year-old Emilie Saltzman was on life support and suffered a brain injury, but she's been making amazing progress.

Elsa showed up in her hospital room and that's way better than a doctor's visit!

Saltzman suffered a traumatic brain injury even though she was wearing a helmet.

"I had a horse accident. He went really fast. I was holding on to his hair on the neck," Emilie Saltzman said.

After three and a half weeks at Westchester Medical Center, she was moved to Blythedale Children's Hospital to recover, and a moment like this is helpful.

"Anything that breaks up the monotony of where you are is really meaningful, and they do a good job here with recreation and different activities, but it's hard to be here. It's hard for me to be here so I can certainly imagine how hard it is for her to be here," said Jeremy Saltzman, Emilie's father.

Elsa is 26-year-old Samantha Catalano from Staten Island. She does plenty of paid princess visits but loves dressing up for this.

"There's nothing more rewarding than seeing a child smile," Catalano said.

She ended up there thanks to a friend of the Saltzman family a treat for both Emilie and her big sister Ella.

"We don't do that many one-on-one with children and that's what we are trying to do, get as many one-on-one visits as we possibly can," Catalano said.

There is no sense yet on when Emilie will be able to go home, but there are many promising signs.

"Everything that you are seeing here, her ability to communicate, her interest in things that she had before, all of those things are really positive, and signs of her improving status," said Dr. Jay Selman, a pediatric neurologist at Blythedale Children's Hospital.

The fact that Emilie can sing the lyrics to a song, let alone speaking and walking down the halls, is a way better ending than anyone could've expected.

"Her doctors have used the word miracle," Jeremy Saltzman said.
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