The survival of a woman shot in the head during the Colorado cinema massacre has been hailed as a miracle after a shotgun pellet traversed the precise course of a brain defect she was unaware she had.
Her remarkable story came as another woman who survived the mass shooting on Friday gave birth in the same hospital where her critically injured husband is in a medically induced coma.
According to her family, Petra Anderson, 22, a musician, lived because she had a rare genetic condition that left her with a small channel of fluid running from the front to back of her brain.
When she was shot in the face the projectile followed the exact course of the defect, avoiding vital areas and lodging in the rear of her head. Doctors removed it after five hours of surgery.
Her sister Chloe Anderson, 25, said: “It entered right through her nose. It went all the way through her brain and to the back of her skull. It did little damage which is a mystery to many people, including the doctors.”
Ms Anderson, a violinist, had recently graduated from the Conservatory of Music at the University of the Pacific in California, and is due to start a master’s degree in Maryland. She had gone to the cinema with two friends to see the Batman film The Dark Knight Rises and was among the victims when a gunman dressed in body armour began spraying the audience with bullets.
Twelve people were killed and 58 injured. Suspect James Holmes, 24, who later identified himself to police as “the Joker,” made his first appearance in court on Monday.
Ms Anderson’s mother Kim Anderson, who has terminal cancer, said her daughter was expected to make a full recovery.
“I believe that she was not only protected by God, but that she was actually prepared for it,” she said. …