Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Hunt for Zahra Baker

Zahra Didn't Want to Leave Australia


Zahra Baker
Zahra Baker

Before Zahra left for America, the local community, a school, and charities raised money to buy Zahra a wheelchair, as well as a laptop computer so that she could complete her school assignments from home. She also had a memorable experience with the Australian military before she left as part of a camp outing. The soldiers gave her a helmet to wear and allowed her to sit on an armored vehicle for photos with them. In one of the photos Zahra was seen giving two thumbs up, according to the Winston-Salem Journal.

When she was with the soldiers her grandmother, Karen Baker, said that "her eyes couldn't have been any bigger."

"She loves the whole army business," her grandmother said. "She handles everything with a smile. She has been on a camp [Camp Quality—a charity for child cancer patients] a couple of years ago, but she hadn't been well enough to go again until this year."

Karen Baker
Karen Baker

When she did the obstacle course involving ropes, other children asked her how she could do the ropes with only one leg. Zahra responded, "Because I want to."

"She was the life of any camp we went on," one of Camp Quality's managers said. "The kids loved her. Other kids were inspired by her enthusiasm and her fight to live against all odds."

A family friend said that Zahra did not want to leave Australia to go to America, mostly because she did not want to leave her grandparents and friends behind.

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