Every day, uvalde survivors heal from trauma and wounds

Thursday, June 2, 2022
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UVALDE Texas School Shooting Leaves a Wake of Broken Hearts and Mental Trauma

The Uvalde, Texas, shooting has left a wake of broken hearts, and the mental trauma of a child can be far-reaching. A psychologist from San Antonio, Dr. Amanda Wetegrove-Romine, worked with the community after the shooting. She met 8-year-old Jeremiah Lennon, who had been in a classroom next to three classmates when the shooting occurred. Although he did not die in the shooting, he was radically changed by it.

UVALDE (Texas) -- The bullet fragments were lodged in the legs and arms of children. They experienced nightmare-like flashbacks and traumatizing memories. The 17 victims of the mass shooting in UVALDE Texas last week will need to heal slowly in this community that is still grieving. 21 others. As the tight-knit town of 16,000 holds funeral after funeral Investigators investigate how Police responded immediately to the incident Many of the victims were still at Robb Elementary School and are currently being treated for their bullet injuries in San Antonio. Uvalde Memorial Hospital treated eleven children and four adults within hours of the shooting. Ten patients were discharged that day, and five were transferred to San Antonio hospitals. Hospitalization was also given to the grandmother of the gunman, who had been shot in the head before the attacker entered the school. The San Antonio hospitals still had five patients on Wednesday. One 10-year-old girl was in critical condition, while the remainder were deemed healthy. Many fourth grade students were among the victims. Teachers and classmates were also shot to death. One young survivor, 11-year-old Miah Cerrillo, CNN reported that she was with a friend. Her dead teacher used the phone to dial %, and she waited hours before officers arrived. Miah was injured by a bullet to the back and claimed she covered her wounds with blood from a friend. Miguel Cerrillo said that the family is just trying to take it one day at a time. Miah's family has started a fund to pay for her medical bills. This will help with both the injuries from the bullet fragment as well as the psychological trauma that comes along with being a survivor of the shooting. Cerrillo stated that his daughter hasn't spoken out about the events in her classroom, even though she is at home. As their families put together fundraising campaigns for treatment, the long-term effects of the shooting on loved ones was felt. Noah Orona (10 years old) was struggling to understand his injuries and also the pain of his classmates. His older sister Laura Holcek posted a GoFundMe message for him. Orona was hit in the shoulder by a bullet which exited from his back, leaving shrapnel in both his arms. Washington Post reported. Kendall Olivarez's family posted another fundraiser stating that Kendall would require several surgeries following being shot in her left shoulder. She was also hit with fragments of bullets to her right leg. Jimmy Olivarez, her uncle said Wednesday that Kendall is doing well. The mental injuries from the shooting reached far beyond hospital walls. It affected a whole community, including parents who held their children with racing heartbeats. Local police are being questioned about the speed they took to arrest the gunman. Mental health professionals say that the scars left by trauma will not be forgotten. The victims are holding on to this horrible, terrible memory," said Dr. Amanda Wetegrove -Romine of San Antonio, who was a psychologist from Uvalde, and provided community counseling services for the victims in the aftermath of the shooting. She said that children were experiencing nightmares and holding on to their parents. One third-grader, 8-year-old Jeremiah Lennon After being shot in the classroom where his three friends had been killed, he feared that he'd be murdered if he returned to school. Brenda Morales, his grandmother, said that he was now quiet, staring at the sky, and not eating as much after the shooting. He's changed. She said that everything has changed. Erika Santiago, a witness to the funeral of Amerie Jo Garza (10 years old), recalled how Adriel, her 10-year old son, was horrified when first images were broadcast on television. Adriel recognized Amerie Rodriguez and Maite Rodrigues as his kindergarten friends. Adriel, a member of the Santiago family, moved to San Antonio and Adriel said that he didn't want to return to school. He stated, "Mom, I don't feel safe." According to mental health professionals, trauma can be particularly devastating for children because it is often a long-lasting effect. This is an exciting stage in their development. They are developing their worldview and learning whether it is safe and unsafe, according to Dr. Arash Javanbakht, director of the Stress, Trauma, and Anxiety Research Clinic, Wayne State University. He said that trauma stays with kids for the rest of their life. Trauma has been recurrent in the many communities that have suffered from school shootings in the United States over the past years, including Columbine High School, Colorado, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Florida, Santa Fe High School, Texas, Sandy Hook Elementary School, Connecticut, and Santa Fe High School, Texas. Columbine survivors, who are now adults, have spoken out to admit that the news about the shooting has reopened their wounds. My formative years of my professional career were spent in an elementary school in Connecticut. U.S. Secretary Miguel Cardona announced Wednesday that a federal program will be established to provide mental health support for Uvalde. According to mental health professionals, survivors will need support from a variety of sources. These can range from psychological first aid for immediate trauma relief to counselling sessions for long-term emotional issues such as anxiety and depression. It will be vital for the community to work together in healing, and parents should play a key role in sharing their emotions with children. Nicole Nugent is a post-traumatic stress disorder expert who is also a professor at Brown University's Warren Alpert Medical School. She believes that support and connection with survivors and others can help to build resilience and heal. According to Wetegrove–Romine the psychologist said Uvalde is a tight-knit, connected community. However, intense attention given by the police has prompted conflicted grief. In Texas, a small community with limited mental health resources and a culture that values stoicism, she was concerned that people might not get the help they need. To help grieving adults, she has started collecting journals that can be used to aid in their process. She said that she worries about long-term resources. There will be another shooting similar to this one and the resources needed to help survivors will have to go. What will happen to Uvalde's people? ___ Groves was reporting from Sioux Falls in South Dakota. Jim Vertuno, Austin, Texas writer, and Jamie Stengle, Dallas reporter, contributed to this report. ___ Continue reading about the shooting at Uvalde High School in Texas. Https://apnews.com/hub/uvalde-school-shooting