An 11-year-old girl who survived the mass shooting at her Texas elementary school has shared that she smeared blood on her body and pretended to be dead to avoid getting shot. Fourth-grader Miah Cerrillo is now alive thanks to her quick thinking, and her family couldn’t be more grateful.
- Cerrillo was barricaded in a classroom with dozens of other students. When an 18-year-old gunman opened fire at Robb Elementary School in Ulvade on Tuesday, killing 19 students and two teachers, several teachers gathered as many children as they could and barricaded them all together inside a classroom for protection.
- The little girl did everything she could to stay safe. Cerrillo’s aunt, Blanca Rivera, told NBC-DFW that the young girl told her family how desperate she was to stay alive and what she’d done to ensure she survived the ordeal. After seeing one of her friends covered in blood, she then smeared some on herself to look as if she’d already been shot. She then played dead, hoping the gunman would think he’d already shot her. “Miah got some blood and put it on herself so she could pretend she was dead,” Ms Rivera said. “It’s too much for me to play that scene over and over again, but that’s what my sister-in-law said is that she saw her friend full of blood and she got blood and put it on herself.”
- Thankfully, Cerrillo’s plan worked. However, she didn’t escape all injury as Cerillo was later found to have bullet fragments in her back. However, after receiving hospital treatment, she was later released and is now recovering at home.
- Miah nearly wasn’t in the classroom when the shooting took place. Her mother told CNN that on the morning of the shooting, Miah had an earache and she’d been taken out of school to go to the doctor. They went to Starbucks on the way back to school and her mother offered to let her stay home since it was nearly summer break and her class was just watching movies. However, Miah wanted to return to school to see her friends and she was dropped off roughly an hour before the shooting.
- Cerrillo is traumatized by her experience at the school. As Rivera said, it’s clear the impact of what she’s been through is going to be difficult for her niece to overcome. “Around midnight my sister-in-law called me and she was just crying, ‘I think it just hit Miah. I think everything to reality now,” she said. Her family has since started a GoFundMe to pay for her therapy.