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Kokomo community rallies around 7-year-old girl after hurtful message left with sidewalk chalk

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KOKOMO, Ind. – A community in Kokomo is rallying around a little girl after a concerning incident Thursday night.

Kyndal Hatten is 7 years old and has a complex medical condition along with autism.

Her mom said Thursday night that she and Kyndal discovered drawings in sidewalk chalk across from their house, one of them saying “Kyndal is dumb.”

The family said the drawings were incredibly hurtful. They hope that by speaking up parents and kids will be reminded to try and better understand those who need a little extra help.

Kyndal is hooked up to a feeding tube, along with other wires. She has mitochondrial disease, cerebral palsy and autism. She’s survived more than two dozen surgeries.

Her parents said her condition often makes it difficult for their daughter to get along with neighborhood kids.

But her mother Tanya said she was shocked Thursday night when Kyndal discovered the drawings across the street from their home.

“Honestly all I wanted to do is just cry,” said Tanya Hatten, “She instantly spelled out, Mom, this says Kyndal is dumb.”

The temporary words left a permanent mark.

“What we would want is for somebody to come alongside of us and help us instead of degrade us or degrade our child,” said Hatten.

“It’s not a good feeling to have people say mean things,” said Lindsey Ogle, with Fade Salon in Kokomo.

Ogle heard about the drawings. She cuts hair for the Hattens and in turn has promised the fiery 7-year-old a day of pampering with makeup at her salon in Kokomo.

“We’re all different, and I want her to have a day to celebrate how different she is, because we all are too,” said Ogle.

Church friends chalked a new message at the family’s home Friday, calling Kyndal a princess. As for how she’s handling it, the 7-year-old doesn’t plan to let the words hurt for long.

“I don’t really care what they say, because it doesn’t make me feel bad,” she said.

The family hasn’t set up the time for the little girl’s pampering appointment yet.

The drawings have since been removed from the street.

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