14-year-old Abigail Kopf was believed to be dead after an Uber driver went on a random killing spree in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
At least 8 victims were shot by 45-year-old Jason Dalton, who was reportedly firing off his semi-automatic handgun in between picking up passengers. He had no prior criminal history.
The shooting incident started at 6pm on February 20th in an apartment complex, and Dalton then headed to a Kia dealership and a Cracker Barrel. The teen was shot in the restaurant parking lot along with a woman named Barbara Hawthorne, who Abigail’s mother Vickie says was a grandmother figure to Abigail.
Barbara was killed instantly, and paramedics initially thought that Abigail was dead on the scene as well, as her heart stopped in their attempt to revive her. Doctors said she was brain-dead, and an organ donation service was contacted with permission from her parents.
However, they refused to give up hope on their little fighter, as her mom and dad both made very clear in their public statements shortly after the shooting tragedy.
“Everybody needs to get that straight. My daughter is not dead. She is alive, and she is fighting for her life. I want everybody to understand that,” Vickie said with bold authority as she broke down in tears. See her unwavering testament of hope in the interview below.
Her dad Gene supported his wife’s stance in saying Abigail “has a long road ahead” but is “strong-willed and fighting.”
And now, nearly 2 weeks later, her parents’ hopeful perseverance has PAID OFF! Abigail has opened her eyes for the first time!!
Abigail Kopf “looked at us tonight,” said an update on her GoFundMe page.”Her right eye is too swollen yet, but she managed to open her eyes and recognized us.”
Since the miraculous occurrence, the teen’s once critical condition has been upgraded to “fair” and the outlook is looking better and better for her full recovery.
Amidst the pain and heartache theKopfs have experienced over these last couple of weeks, they are still empathizing with the Dalton family, who they hold no animosity toward for the shooting. “Our thoughts are with the Dalton family, who are also suffering at this time,” said Gene. “We want his family to know that we don’t hold anything against the family members.”