|Shooting Was Survivor's Second Brush With Death|
|By KEVIN DOLAK (@kdolak)||Dec 12, 2012, 12:44 PM|
A teenage girl was shot in the torso and survived the Oregon mall shooting, marking the second time she escaped death in recent months.
Kristina Shevchenko, 15, also survived a deadly head-on car accident in August.
Shevchenko is undergoing surgery in an Oregon hospital after being wounded at the Clackamas Town Center mall in suburban Portland.
She was hit when a shooter wearing a white hockey mask, black clothing and a bullet proof vest ran into the shopping center at 3:29 p.m. and began spraying bullets, according to witnesses. The gunman shot and killed two innocent bystanders and seriously wounded Shevchenko, who was taken to a nearby hospital. The gunman killed himself as shoppers fled the chaotic scene.
The Shevchenko family released a statement Wednesday extending their condolences to the families of the other shooting victims. They also thanked the quick response of emergency personnel and officials at the Oregon Health and Science University Hospital:
"Our daughter, Kristina Shevchenko, 15, remains in serious condition but is alert and talking. She informed us today that the first person to be thanked is Alyona, her friend and schoolmate at Clackamas Middle School, who immediately called 911 and remained by her side until the emergency service providers arrived," the statement said.
Shevchenko's family has also set up a Facebook page with updates on Kristina's condition, on which they explained what happened to her as she walked through the mall Tuesday and her surgery today.
"The bullet went through, bruising her lung, it missed any vital organs and it missed her ribs. She will need 2 more operations. None of the vital organs were hit and she is doing well after the first operation," postings on the Facebook page said. "She will have a couple more operations in the following week."
An administrator of the Facebook page confirmed with ABCNews.com that Kristina Shevchenko is 15. The page is listed as being administered by Yevgeniy Shevchenko.
Her brother recounted what happened to her on Tuesday, detailing her injuries.
"She was walking home with her friend when the shooter came out of Macys and started shooting," the Facebook post said. "My sister was shot from the back and the bullet went through. There are a couple bullet fragments stuck inside that they are going to try and remove, her right arm was grazed and her lung and her kidney were bruised."
Dr. Laszlo Kiraly of the Oregon Heath and Science University said Shevchenko "came to us seriously wounded with an assault rifle wound to chest. She was awake. She had a collapsed right lung , blood in her chest."
"She seemed to be confused and in shock" when she arrived at the hospital, the doctor said.
"At this point she is still in serious condition. We are optimistic about her initial recovery. However we have to be cautious because this is a very serious wound. She is at risk for complications and infections from this serious wound," Kiraly said.
It was her second brush with death.
On Aug. 5, Shevchenko was riding in a full-size Ford van driven by her sibling Emiliya Shevchenko, 27, and six other people in Vancouver when a Ford Ranger veered into their lane and crashed into them head on, according to The Colombian. The impact killed the other driver, Alberto Perez Garcia, 25, and Emiliya Shevchenko had to be extricated from the van. Kristina survived the crash.