That cutie to the left is 7-year-old Detroit resident Alexis Goggins. You may remember Alexis from her heroism around the holiday season: During an armed assault on her mom Seliethia by an estranged boyfriend, Alexis jumped in front of the gun, and was shot six times. (Her mother was shot twice.) The good news is that the spunky schoolkid is officially on the mend: On February 7, following two months in the hospital and six surgeries, Alexis left the hospital. She returns twice a week for physical therapy to help with her hand-eye coordination, and will soon be fitted with an artificial eye (her right eye was hit by a bullet and destroyed).

Her mom, Seliethia, calls Alexis her "angel", telling reporters, "I'm thanking God every day that me and my baby are still here...It has taught me to ... appreciate the smaller things in life". The one stain on this otherwise uplifting story is the reaction of the police: According to the AP, because Alexis is developmentally disabled, police think "it may never be known whether Alexis meant to shield her mother from the bullets." It seems ridiculous to assume that just because she lags behind other kids her age, Alexis — who, as you'll remember, screamed "Don't hurt my mother!" during the assault — doesn't have the instinct to protect a loved one from danger.

Detroit's Wounded 'Hero' Girl Recovering [AP]
Earlier: 7-Year-Old Girl Protects Mom, Takes A Bullet