Lone Survivor, Girl, 4, Shows Improvement

From Times Wire Services

The 4-year-old lone survivor of the Northwest Airlines crash showed improvement Tuesday, and relatives marveled at her good fortune at the same time they despaired at the loss of her parents and 6-year-old brother.

Her grandfather, Anthony Cichan, said he had set aside his grief over the deaths of his son, daughter-in-law and grandson long enough to come from Pennsylvania to identify her.

Cecilia Cichan of Tempe, Ariz., was upgraded from critical to serious condition Tuesday afternoon at C. S. Mott Children's Hospital, spokeswoman Catherine Cureton said. The girl's breathing was being assisted by a respirator, which may be disconnected today, Cureton said.

'Super Little Gal'

"She's gonna make it," Cichan said Tuesday. "She's a super little gal, and she's making excellent progress. She's an amazing little girl. It's a miracle."

Cecilia was the only person aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 255 to survive the crash.

Cureton said doctors expected Cecilia to live. She was responding to stimuli Tuesday and was unconscious but not comatose.

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