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Vegas Shooting Survivor To Graduate From UL This Week

She promised her mother she would earn degree
Posted at 5:38 PM, Dec 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-16 22:24:14-05

LAFAYETTE, La. — Anita Woolwine will be at the Cajundome Friday, fulfilling a promise she made many years ago. "When life got in the way and I had to drop out of college, I promised my mother that I would go back and I would finish and I'll be fulfilling that promise on Friday", she explained,

"It's something that I've worked on for so long and I'm just really thrilled to be able to be there," Woolwine, a New Iberia resident, said.

In October 2017, not long after resuming her journey towards a degree, Anita and a group of friends went to the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas.

"It was the last day of the festival everything was great we had an amazing time leading up until Sunday night. Everyone was in good spirits and enjoying being together, it's not often that we get that many of our friends together so everyone was pretty excited," she said.

That celebration was cut short when 64 year-old Stephen Paddock fired more than 1100 rounds of ammo into the crowd, killing 58 people and wounding more than 400.

"We gathered who we could and we made the decision to hide and we hid in a production trailer behind the stage", said Woolwine who wasn't injured, but many of her friends were.

"A good friend of ours was shot in her leg and she's struggled ever since, another friend of ours was shot in her jaw and her 11th or 12th surgery is today", said Woolwine.

The tragedy nearly pushed her to break the promise she made to her mother, "I debated on continuing because I was just not in a very good place mentally but I decided to continue and it gave me something to focus on."

Friday her mother will finally see her earn her degree.