Something to Smile About

WSVN — A single mom survived being shot in the face by her ex-boyfriend. But the trauma took away her self-confidence. Now for the first time in years – she has “Something to Smile About.”

Janay Monroe has been waiting a long time for this day.

Janay Monroe: “I am both nervous and excited. I’m nervous of course because it’s surgery but I’m also excited to have my smile back and have my face back.”

The 26-year old will never forget what happened to her three years ago. Her ex-boyfriend shot her in the face following an argument. Janay’s sister was trying to drive away when police say he fired into the car.

Janay Monroe: “I ended up getting shot in the face and the chest a total of three times.”

Dr. Leslie Sultan: “The first picture over here is her initial gunshot injury and you can see the devastation that the bullet caused.”

Surgeon Leslie Sultan treated Janay at Broward Health Medical Center.

Dr. Leslie Sultan: “Initially her jaw was crushed in a number of pieces between her two molars on either side.”

It took several very long painstaking procedures to reconstruct her face.

Dr. Leslie Sultan: “Her first set of procedures was taking bone from her hip and building up her jaw with a computer designed titanium bone plate.”

Janay lost most of her lower teeth in the shooting. Eventually her medical insurance ran out and so did her self-confidence.

Janay Monroe: “This is something I’ve been dealing with in therapy, being self-conscious of my face, cause I don’t feel attractive.”

But after Marvin Merritt was sentenced to 50 years in prison for the shooting,  Janay received some good news. Dr. Sultan and his team offered to finish her final surgeries free of charge! Two weeks ago, Janay was wheeled into surgery.

Janay Monroe: “So now I finally feel like I am going to get my face back, I am going to be beautiful again, I am going to be happy again.”

First, Dr. Sultan had to rebuild her jaw.

Dr. Leslie Sultan: “We’re going to remove any remaining gunshot fragments that have been left from her original injury.”

Then it was time for Janay to get her new teeth with dentist Larry Marks.

Dr. Larry Marks: “To not only be able to restore her function but also her heart, her mind, her life is something the rewards are just beyond belief.”

It was the moment everyone was waiting for! Time to reveal Janay’s new smile!

Janay Monroe: “I can see teeth in my face and they’re so beautiful, it’s like wow, it does make me feel not so self-conscious.”

Janay says she didn’t smile much after the shooting … But now she can’t stop!

Janay Monroe: “This is me honestly saying this for the first time in three years, I am very happy.”

Happy to put this chapter of her life behind her.

Janay Monroe: “In more ways than one this is all behind me.”

Janay is looking forward to going back to school and finishing her degree. She thanks Broward Health Medical Center and all of the staff who gave her the best gift of all – her smile back.

For more on Dr. Sultan’s practice, visit