On October 1, 2017, thousands of lives changed forever, when a maniac opened fire at a large audience during the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Forty-eight people were killed and 851 injured. The emotional and psychological scars left from that day will remain with us for a long, long time.
One of the victims was Jovanna Calzadillas. The 30-year-old mother was at the concert with her husband, Francisco ‘Frank’ Calzadillas, when the shooter opened fire.
As the crowd broke out in panic. Jovanna was shot in his head and fell to the ground.
Jovanna was taken to the nearest hospital, but doctors had little hope for her chances of survival.
Having taken a shot to the head, she naturally required emergency treatment. While in a very critical state, her husband Frank was forced to begin imagining a life without his wife. And things got worse when doctors informed him that he needed to need to decide whether to ‘pull the chord’.
Frank was completely crushed, faced with a truly nightmarish situation.
But one night everything changed. He had a vivid dream — in it, his wife approached him, whispering that “everything will be fine”.
When Frank woke up, his decision was made: He refused to shut down Jovana’s respirator. He would never give up hope for his wife.
Miraculously, Jovanna woke up against all odds. Even the doctors were stunned at the sudden occurance.
“Her shot injury was difficult, but we prayed and hoped and then she woke up,” said Frank, a policeman with the Salt River Police Department in Arizona.
For months, Jovanna struggled tirelessly to get her life back following the Las Vegas massacre.
Progress was slow and often frustrating, but Jovanna was determined to improve, not only for herself but also for her family.
Since waking up, Jovanna has come out with her incredible story.
Although facing her demons from the past is never easy, she continues to talk openly about her feelings and progress towards returning to normal life.
“Some of me disappeared that night on October 1,” she says. “Even though I will not be the same old Jovanna, I will come back stronger.”
“I will fight for them,” adds Jovanna, referring to her family. “And I will not stop believing in myself.”
Her powerful message is now touching victims of the horrific attack in Las Vegas and others around the world who may be living with fear after any given tragedy.
“We will not let people like him [the shooter] win,” she says. “And we will not live in fear”.
Watch this news report about Jovanna’s amazing journey:
Jovanna speaking publicly whilst continuing to heal is such an act of courage. Her words are helping other victims and helping them get back to a regular routine after the devastating attack.
Her inspiring story is a great example of how we can overcome any obstacle, regardless of the circumstances.
We must continue to fight for what is right and what we believe in, regardless of what comes our way.
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