Leanna Harris, Mother Whose Child Died in Hot Car, Finds Comfort in Her Faith

( [email protected] ) Jul 16, 2014 02:20 PM EDT
Leanna Harris - Child Who Died in Hot Car

A young mother whose toddler died after being left in a hot car last month says that while she struggles to get through each day, she finds extreme comfort in her faith.

"Leanna Harris is living every parent's nightmare -- the child she bore and loved every moment of his life has died. For most parents, it is difficult, if not impossible, to comprehend such a thing," said Harris' attorney, Lawrence Zimmerman.

"She mourns Cooper's death deeply, in her own private way. She takes comfort from a strong faith in God, but the loss is still overwhelming. Getting through each day seems almost impossible," he continued.

According to CNN, the statement is the first time the grieving mother has publicly described her feelings since speaking at the funeral for her 22-month-old son, Cooper.

Police reports reveal that Harris' husband, Justin Ross Harris, left Cooper strapped into a car seat in his SUV for seven hours while he went to work just outside Atlanta on June 18. Records show that the mercury topped 92 that day, and police say the temperature was 88 degrees when the toddler was pronounced dead in a parking lot near his father's workplace.

The horrific event made national headlines and many expressed outrage at the negligent parenting of Justin, who pled not guilty to charges of murder and child cruelty.

Meanwhile, Leanna, who is not a suspect in the case, is requesting privacy as she continues to mourn the untimely death of her child.

"She asks that she be allowed to grieve in private without reporters calling, following or watching her home. Since his death, she has been unable to have that time of mourning that every bereaved parent needs. Please allow her the dignity to mourn her son in private," Zimmerman wrote.

While Leanna remained relatively quiet about the incident, she did speak at her son's funeral in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

She described Cooper as "perfect," saying she wouldn't have traded motherhood "for the world. "

"As children do, he turned our lives upside-down," she told mourners. "Cleaning, changing diapers, dinner, bath time. Finally, what I would call mommy time. I wouldn't trade it for the world."

In her speech, Leanna recalled two nights before Cooper died, when he had slept with her and her husband "snuggling in between both of us."

"I remember turning over in the middle of the night. His mouth was open and his full toddler lips just breathing right into my face. I will cherish that moment forever," she continued, her voice breaking.

The devastated mother concluded by explaining that while she dearly misses her son, she wouldn't ask to bring him to back into this "broken world."

"I miss him with all of my heart. Would I bring him back? No. To bring him back into this broken world would be selfish."

Cooper Harris
Justin Harris is charged with murder in the death of his son, Cooper. (Reuters)