One of the survivors of the Aurora shootings was Carli Richards — pictures of her wounds (warning: graphic) made the rounds in the days following the tragedy. Unlike some of the other first-hand accounts of survival, Carli’s may be unique because she’s an atheist (who has a Scarlet A tattoo near her left shoulder).
I almost gave thought to praying in the ambulance that night, because that was when the real seriousness of the situation hit me — however, the medical staff whose care I was placed under took such good care of me. I was under the care of such competent, caring beings, that there was no need to do such a thing. I remember being in so much pain and shock that I was delirious, but at some point I was thanking them profusely. It wasn’t a higher power that got me out of my seat — it was the smell of the tear gas that landed at my feet. It was my boyfriend, Chris, who got me to the police officer who flagged down an ambulance for me. And it was the amazing medical staff who took care of me to ensure that I left the hospital in the best possible condition. I don’t want to put down the power of positivity, and that’s what I feel prayer is — positive vibes being sent your way- but I do like to give credit where it is due, and express my extreme gratitude towards all of these people, and also to my parents for bringing me up “right”.
If you’d like to help Carli cover her medical bills, you can donate here.