"Raymond is such a gentle, kind man."
That's how a mother has described the driver who woke up only moments before hitting her and her two young children on a rural road on the outskirts of Tauranga.
She told the Bay of Plenty Times Weekend that she and her husband met Raymond Horscroft, the driver responsible for the crash, for the first time since the crash last week and bore no-ill feelings towards him.
In the weeks since the September crash, Horscroft's family has twice visited the family's home to check on their recovery, the mother said.
"It was the first time I had gone past that part of the road since the accident and it was quite hard for me.
"The Horscrofts are a very nice family and Raymond is such gentle, kind man. He was keen to find out how we were all doing and our son gave him lots of cuddles to reassure him."
The mother said it was just a "freak accident" which could have happened to anyone and Mr Horscroft told them he was thankful they were all alive and making good progress.
"Our son is doing really well. He's made amazing progress. He's crawling around and climbing and doing all the typical things boys do at this age."
He was still under the care of occupational therapist, and a physiotherapist, dieticians and a nurse were regularly coming to the house.
A Tauranga Hospital paediatrician was also continuing to monitor their son's progress although a MRI scan at Starship Hospital last month gave him the all-clear, she said.
Her two-year-old daughter who suffered a fractured nose, two fractures in her arm, and a head laceration was now back at daycare and " loving being back with her friends".
The mother's right leg had been half degloved from the hip down and had required three surgeries and skin grafts. She said she was doing well and was due to have another orthopaedic appointment at Tauranga Hospital next week.
She said the family put on morning tea at Te Puke Police Station yesterday which was also attended by Te Puke, Maketu and Pukehina volunteer fire crews, as well as a crew member from the Trustpower TECT Rescue Helicopter Service.
"It was great chance to have a laugh, talk about the issues at the scene and personally thank all these wonderful people for what they did that day," the mother said.
The couple said they would never forget that horrific day or all the support they had received from the local community.
"Our little man is alive because all the fire brigade and other emergency services staff gave an extra 110 per cent ensure he had fighting chance," the father said
"We cannot thank them and all hospital staff and everyone else enough for their amazing support and love over the past three-and-half months," the couple said.