Photo Gallery: Survival and struggle

  • 7th graders Leiny Otero, left, texts on her phone while Peterson Exias, takes to the air during cancelled swimming class. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Days after the Haiti earthquake, Peterson Exais is about to be loaded onto a medical plane headed to Miami. In the blue scrubs is Dr. Chad Perlyn who has become a mentor and friend for Peterson. Courtesy of Dr. Chad Perlyn

  • Peterson Exias pays close attention during social studies class at Breakthrough Miami. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • The once shy Peterson Exias, 12, center, raises his hand during social studies classes where he sits with fellow 7th graders Ken Fernandez, left, and Randrick Riley, right. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, center, breaks into laughter as fellow campmates Victor Mendez, gets a 'five' from Gerbenn Seraphin, right, after solving a math problem. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, 12, center, seriously engages with fellow student during social studies class. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Daryll Ferrer, left, Mykel Iheagwara, and Jaylen Bishop, engage in conversation as Peterson Exias stands quietly in line for a snack next to Emmanuel Jones, right. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, 12, left, looks over to Victor Mendez, center, who is working on a math problem as Ken Fernandez, right looks over Mendez's shoulder during lunch. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias sits alone in choral class. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Erykah Eusebio, 7th grader, left, and takes a photo of Peterson Exias who she is featuring on her camp blog. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Erykah Eusebio, 7th grader, right, and takes a photo of Peterson Exias who she is featuring on her camp blog. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exais, 12, smiles as he and Jaylen Bishop, Gerbenn Seraphin, Adrian Hudson, Absolom Stroman, right, prepare to practice dance steps with teacher Aaron Braselton, Junior at Alabama University. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, 12, sits alone as he busts a move while sitting in choral class. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, center, 12, looks towards teacher Aaron Braselton, a junior at Alabama University as they and Shavonya Strachan, left, practice during the "I Sing" chorus class for an upcoming event , "Celebration." Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, right, takes to the air as he dances while teacher Aaron Braselton, a junior at Alabama University, left, talks with fellow student, Absolom Stroman, right, during practice at the "I Sing" chorus class for an upcoming event , "Celebration." Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exais, 12, shows his dance moves with fellow students during practice at the "I Sing" chorus class for an upcoming event , "Celebration." Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, left, bust into laughter as he practices with fellow students Gerbenn Seraphin, left, Jaylen Bishop, and Shavonya Strachan, right. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, 12, center, stands in line for a snack with other Breakthrough Miami students who dressed as nerds for the day. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • 8th grader Julian Sierra, left, declares his friendship with Peterson Exias, 12, prior to returning back to class. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Gabriel Quiroz, left, and Peterson Exias, right, peek over Annette Kohlasch's shoulder as she plays a video game on her phone. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • After being crushed and trapped for week, the scars still remain as Peterson Exias, 12, starts a new life in Miami, Florida. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, 12, boards his bus back home to Little Haiti. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exias, 12, exits the apartment building where he and his mother share a room as he heads to church. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Amenise Jean-Baptist, left, came with her son, Peterson Exias, 12, to Miami to seek medical care for Peterson. The pair share a small apartment with a friend and his son in Little Haiti. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Amenise Jean-Baptist came with her son, Peterson Exias, 12, to Miami to seek medical care for Peterson. The pair share a small apartment with a friend and his son in Little Haiti. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Amenise Jean-Baptist prepares dinner in the apartment where she shares a room with her son Peterson Exias. The pair share a small apartment with a friend and his son in Little Haiti. Peterson Exias, survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, attended Breakthrough Miami which brings Miami-Dade's brightest diverse middle school students to Ransom Everglades Middle School's Coconut Grove campus on Thursday, July 18, 2013 for six weeks during the summer. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exais, left, gets pushed by 16-month-old Merritt Perly during Peterson's Wednesday night visit on Aug. 7, 2013. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exais, left, plays legos with 16-month-old Merritt Perlyn, as his father, Dr. Chad Perlyn, and brother, Ethan, 4, and mother, Brooke right, join in the fun during Peterson's Wednesday night visit on Aug. 7, 2013. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • 16-month-old Merritt Perlyn, left, plays legos with Peterson Exias, along with his father, Dr. Chad Perlyn, and brother, Ethan, 4, right, during Peterson's Wednesday night visit on Aug. 7, 2013. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Dr. Chad Perlyn, left, and Peterson Exais, right, share Wednesday nights at his Miami Beach home with Perlyn's family. Peterson has bonded closely with Perlyn's family and is considered as part on the family. The Dr. Perlyn, his son, Ethan, 4, and Peterson Exais are photographed during Peterson's Wednesday night visit on Aug. 7, 2013. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Peterson Exais, left, has dinner with Dr. Chad Perlyn, center, and his family. 16-month-old Merritt Perlyn, right, gets his father's attention during Peterson's Wednesday night visit on Aug. 7, 2013. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

  • Dr. Chad Perlyn, left, and Peterson Exais, share Wednesday nights at his Miami Beach home with Perlyn's family. Peterson has bonded closely with Perlyn's family and is considered as part on the family. The pair are photographed during Peterson's Wednesday night visit on Aug. 7, 2013. CARL JUSTE / MIAMI HERALD STAFF