Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Summer Moll, seriously injured in 2008 crash, is officially adopted by her grandmother


Eight-year-old Summer Moll had a little speech ready. She was going to tell the judge she has two mothers now — her mother who is in heaven, and her grandmother who helped her fight through horrific injuries and who will take care of her the rest of her life.

But on Monday it all happened so fast. The judge asked, "Are you ready?" Summer called out "Yes!" And just like that, she was formally adopted by her grandmother, Tammy Rosian, 50.

Summer, who came to court in a pink polka dot dress, a pink scarf and white sandals — with butterflies painted on her toenails — never needed that speech.

She is officially the adoptive daughter of her grandmother, and one more milestone in her hard, eventful life is behind her.

Four years ago, there was a chance of no milestones.

On Sept. 10, 2008, she and her mother, Jennifer O'Boyle, were struck by another car going the wrong way at 80 mph on the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway. The other driver was drunk.

Summer's mother was killed. Summer suffered fractures in her arms, legs, pelvis, eye socket and skull.

The other driver, Cheryl Maria Riemann, 29, is serving a 15-year prison sentence. She has begged the family for forgiveness.

Summer has no memory of the crash. She's in kindergarten-first grade at the Lighthouse Center for Creative Learning in Brandon, still struggling with residual head trauma. She can walk and run, but had recent surgery on her scalp and will have more later in the year.

It has been a long haul for her Brandon grandparents as well. Tammy and Art Rosian have been hurt by the lousy economy, unable to find customers for a flooring business. They're both hunting for jobs. Fundraisers for Summer have dwindled over the past four years.

But Monday was all about their new start.

Before the ceremony in Hillsborough Circuit Judge Catherine Catlin's courtroom, the grandmother said she felt as nervous as she did on her wedding day.

Later, she said she had peace of mind "knowing Summer will always be taken care of." Tammy Rosian and Summer's father, Joshua Moll, reached an agreement that allowed for the adoption.

Publix donated a party cake. Even the judge lost her judicial cool. She allowed a cheer in court, and she popped out a gift for Summer she had hidden behind her bench — a giant teddy bear.

Then Summer and her family went out for pizza.

Times researcher John Martin contributed to this report. John Barry can be reached at (813) 226-3383 or [email protected]

Summer Moll, seriously injured in 2008 crash, is officially adopted by her grandmother 06/04/12 [Last modified: Monday, June 4, 2012 11:29pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. It's time for the Dodgers to be back in the World Series


    It’s hard to believe that it’s been 29 years since the Los Angeles Dodgers made the World Series. That’s far too long. I still remember being at Chavez Ravine for the 1988 World Series, watching Kirk Gibson homer into the right field stands to beat the Oakland A’s in Game 1.

    Been a long …

    The Los Angeles Dodgers congratulate each other after beating the Chicago Cubs in Game 3 of the National League Championship Series
  2. Kenny Chesney coming to Raymond James Stadium in Tampa


    Used to be you could set your watch to a Kenny Chesney concert at Tampa's Raymond James Stadium.

  3. Nikita Kucherov's start something to see


    Yes, the Lightning lost in a shootout at New Jersey on Tuesday night, blowing a 4-3 lead late in the game.

    Nikita Kucherov is on quite a roll
  4. Nebraska man accused of helping Florida girlfriend kill self said he thought she had terminal cancer

    Human Interest

    LINCOLN, Neb. -- Investigators say a Nebraska man facing an assisted suicide charge in his Florida girlfriend's death believed she had stage-four cancer, but an autopsy didn't find any tumors.

    Matthew J. Stubbendieck, of Weeping Water, Neb., faces an assisted suicide charge after authorities say he helped his girlfriend, Alicia Wilemon-Sullivan of Orange City, Florida., kill herself in the woods near Weeping Water in early August. [Case County (Neb.) Jail via AP]
  5. Tampa's Lance McCullers Jr. knows this stage - and this feeling


    He has been on this stage before, two postseasons ago.

    And he knows this feeling, too.

    Houston Astros pitcher acknowledges the crowd as he leaves Game 4 of the American League Championship Series at Yankee Stadium