Larry the Cable Guy -- under the guise of a fun-loving, twang-talking animated tow truck -- used Twitter Monday to pass along words of encouragement to the Winder toddler battling for his life after a massive tree limb fell on his head.
Tripp Halstead, 2, was at his Winder daycare last week when storm winds blew a heavy branch off of a tree. It hit off a fence and landed on the toddler, sending him to Children's Healthcare of Atlanta with severe brain trauma. After a long, up-and-down weekend, Halstead's family received communication Monday from one of Tripp's favorite characters: Mater, the animated tow truck from the Disney movie "Cars."
Larry the Cable Guy, who voices Mater in the movie, tweeted well wishes as his alter ego.
"Hey Tripp! It's Mater!" back-to-back tweets read. "Like tuh mater without the tuh. I hope you git well soon Lil buddy so we can do us some tractor tippin!"
"I love you! Everybody in Radiator springs says hi and hope you git better. See ya later, Mater."
The tweets -- which will be shared with Tripp when he's taken out of a coma for good -- were the culmination of a trying weekend.
On Thursday, family got word that Tripp's injury spanned both sides of his brain, complicating his recovery and leaving a degree of uncertainty about the extent of the impact throughout his body. Doctors were not optimistic on Friday and Saturday about the youngster's ability to survive, but he pulled through, various family members posted on Facebook.
By Monday, the family was "having a great day."
"I just saw my baby move his leg. It was the most amazing feeling," Tripp's mother, Stacy, posted on the "Tripp Halstead Updates" Facebook page Monday afternoon.
"I haven't seen my baby move in a full week. The (doctors) say this is a great thing. He is still Critical, but the fact that he moved is just so amazing."
Tripp's aunt, Crystal Condon, gave a few more details at about 4 p.m. Monday. She said that while doctors changed his neck brace, Tripp showed more signs of life.
"He was kicking his little legs and moving his hands which made me the happiest aunt in the world," she wrote. "I feel for the first time they are giving us a little bit of hope and we are running with it."
The "Tripp Halstead Updates" Facebook page had more than 35,000 "likes" as of late Monday afternoon. Several fundraisers, details of which can be found on the page, have been established for the family.
The family also launched a Twitter account --@Trippupdates -- on Monday.
The toddler's grandfather, Larry Hughes, posted on Facebook as well.
"We thought we had lost him twice, but he is such a fighter he is still with us," he wrote, "(and) every minute is special, go hug your kids and tell them just how much you love them, give them a hug from Tripp."
"Thank you all so much," he continued, "words can not express the love we have felt and the outpouring for trip."