FORT WORTH, Texas -- Even if Abdallah Khader's eyes could see, or his brain understood that he turned seven on Monday, there's not enough breath in his body to blow out a candle.
"It's really very sad, because the first thing he got on his birthday today was a visit from hospice," said his mom, Loubna Elharazin.
Abdallah stares into the distance, strapped into a vertical position on a brace. His shallow breaths softly rattle.
An accused drunk driver left him all but brain dead. But pneumonia is the killer now stalking Abdallah. His parents thought they would lose him in the hospital last week.
"I made the decision that if my son's heart stops and he stops breathing, just let him go," said the heartbroken mother. "I don't want to see him in pain any more."
The pain began in February 2009, in a car that was crushed by Stewart Richardson's pickup truck. Richardson's blood alcohol measured triple the DWI threshold.
Abdallah's parents have celebrated their child's birthdays ever since; they made him that promise. And they want to keep his story public in hopes it will keep someone else from driving drunk.
Stewart Richardson's life is marked by mugshots from at least a half dozen drinking and driving cases from four different states. Prosecutors say all those priors should let them seek a life sentence in this case, instead of a 20-year maximum.
While an appeals court considers the request, Richardson waits in jail, without a trial date.
"That makes me very angry," said Loubna Elharazin.
But she has no time for anger; her son requires constant care.
Her daughter Jannah just turned two — the same age Abdallah was the night of the crash.
Jannah dances around the room shouting "Happy birthday," a constant reminder that Abdallah was once just as happy.