Recovering teacher shot by 6-year-old: ‘It’s changed me’


RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – A Virginia teacher who was shot and wounded by her 6-year-old student said it has changed her life and she has vivid memories and nightmares about that day.

“I just will never forget the look on his face that he gave me while he pointed the gun directly at me,” first-grade teacher Abby Zwerner said during an exclusive interview with NBC’s Savannah Guthrie about the student. “It’s changed me. It’s changed my life.”

She said she’s still in shock and can’t make sense of it, in a portion of the interview that was aired Tuesday morning on “Today.”

“I’m not sure when the shock will ever go away because of just how surreal it was and the vivid memories I have of that day. I think about it daily. Sometimes I have nightmares,” she said.

Speaking publicly for the first time since the Jan. 6 shooting, Zwerner said in a portion of the interview that was aired Monday on “NBC Nightly News” that she’s had a challenging recovery including four surgeries and has some days when she “can’t get up out of bed,” while others she is able to go about her day and make it to appointments.

“For going through what I’ve gone through, I try to stay positive. You know, try to have a positive outlook on what’s happened and where my future’s heading,” Zwerner said

Zwerner was hospitalized for nearly two weeks after being shot in the chest and left hand as she taught her class at Richneck Elementary School in Newport News, Virginia. The shooting rattled the military shipbuilding community and sent shock waves around the country, with many wondering how a child so young could get access to a gun and shoot his teacher.


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