Girl smiles after seeing herself after carnival ride ripped out her scalp

An 11-year-old girl, whose scalp was ripped off her head by a carnival ride May 7, has seen her face for the first time since the accident.

Elizabeth Gilreath, nicknamed LuLu by her family, smiled when she saw her reflection, according to a Facebook post from her mother, Virginia Cooksey.

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Cooksey shared photos of her daughter's difficult recovery in an Omaha, Nebraska, hospital on her Facebook page.

"Lulu is stronger than me," Cooksey said on Facebook. "My baby girl saw herself for the first time today. The way she handle it (gave) me strength."

Cooksey said her daughter's doctor told her LuLu will have surgery Friday or Saturday.

LuLu was on the King’s Crown ride during a Cinco de Mayo festival when her hair got caught in a point of the crown.

Her father Timothy Gilreath told WTVR at the time that the ride "went on for 5-10 minutes … while it ripped and pulled my daughter around."

Related: Carnival ride rips out girl’s scalp

LuLu continues to recover as her mother provides updates on Facebook.

Cooksey wrote on May 12 that her daughter was talking and asking for hugs.

WOWT reported Friday that the investigation of the ride company, Thomas D. Thomas Shows, is still underway.

The family said they have not heard from the company, and they have a lawyer.

To help pay for LuLu's recovery, family member Nina Wallace set up a GoFundMe page. It has raised over $61,000 of its $75,000 goal.

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