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University Of Md. Grad Student Survives Colorado Movie Theater Massacre

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Petra Anderson
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WJZ general assignment reporter Mike Hellgren came to Maryland's News...
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COLLEGE PARK, Md. (WJZ) — Fifteen victims of the Colorado shooting remain hospitalized. Five of them are in critical condition and one of them is a promising musician headed to the University of Maryland.

Mike Hellgren has her story, which is nothing less than miraculous.

Petra Anderson’s story is one of the miracles to come from the horrific massacre inside a theater in Aurora. A musician and composer, she was excited about her upcoming graduate studies at the University of Maryland. Now she’s in the hospital after being shot four times, including once in the face.

“The doctors did tell us initially that she’s not even supposed to be alive because of where the injury is and she’s not only alive, but she’s, you know, walking around and talking to people,” said Petra’s sister, Chloe Anderson.

A benign birth defect saved her brain from major damage after the bullet went through her nose and to the back of her skull. It followed the path of that defect, a tiny channel of fluid, running through her brain. She can speak and move, and is likely to continue her music career.

“She’s very groggy from the meds they have her on, which we’re glad for because that means she’s not in pain,” Chloe Anderson said.

At the Performing Arts Center on the College Park campus, the close community is pulling for her.

“It’s really sad. I know a lot of people who are grad students,” said sophomore Sarah Lord. “Even from here, I feel for those people. I can’t imagine what they’re going through.”

Chloe Anderson made a video asking for donations for her care.

“Thank you for standing with us and letting this joker know he may have intended it as his story, but we’re taking it back,” she said.

Her mother, who is suffering from terminal cancer with perhaps just weeks to live, is by Petra’s side right now, praying for a full recovery.

Click here to read what her pastor has to say and click here to donate.

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