Baby Carter, who was critically injured after falling nearly seven metres in his grandmother's arms, is responding to voices and is no longer on a respirator.
The newborn was only four days old when he and his grandmother Julie Ferne plunged over the railing in his father's home in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and fell onto the marble floor below.
Ferne, 68, an artist and primary school teacher who had been living in Auckland, died shortly after the accident eight days ago. Carter has been in Ho Chi Minh Children's Hospital fighting for his life.
Today, dad Phil Preston said Carter was conscious, and it was a matter of waiting for him to wake up more.
"He is responding to our voices and sort of flickering his eyes, trying to open them," Preston said.
"The doctors said he's showing good signs of recovery. He's no longer on a respirator, which is a huge step. He's breathing on his own."
Doctors were also planning to try to take Carter's feeding tubes out.
The wee boy received a massive brain injury in the fall from the impact to the back of his head. There was no bleeding from the head or any fracture to the skull.
"It's one of those wait and see things," Preston said.
Support he and partner Chau had received from New Zealand was humbling.
"It's been just unbelievable. I can't fathom people coming from my past, from the family's past and offering their condolences and sharing their love with us.
"It truly has helped. Just knowing that mum was so loved in the community has made a big difference."
The family, including Phil's two brothers, has set up a trust fund account in Ferne's name with the aim of raising money for hospital equipment.
During the week Carter has been in hospital, they have seen other families struggling to keep their children alive as there isn't enough equipment or money to help all the children in need.
Phil's brother Sean is managing the trust fund account and aims to spend the money on specific equipment, such as a paediatric ventilator, or spend it on freight if there is any unused equipment from New Zealand or elsewhere which could be sent over.
Donations could be made to any ASB branch or directly into the Julie Ferne Memorial Trust ASB account, 12-3198-0065427-00
- © Fairfax NZ News
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