PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Just 10 days ago, a terrifying ordeal. Chopper 3 flew over the basketball court at Hancock Rec Center, where a woman and a 16-year-old had been shot. Now, we’re hearing from the woman paralyzed after she was shot on the playground after a game of kickball with her friends.
Ten days ago, Amanda Lyons was a “normal” 35-year-old wife and health care professional, but a game of kickball with her friends and a stray bullet changed that. Lyons’ story is putting a face on the devastation gun violence causes so many innocent people across the city.
“I keep thinking that I am going to wake up from a really bad nightmare,” Lyons said.
Lyons spoke with Eyewitness News from her hospital room at Magee Rehab 10 days after a weeknight game of kickball with her friends, a tradition eight years strong, changed everything.
“The next thing I know is, I hear, ‘pop, pop, pop,'” Lyons.
Just after 9 p.m. on May 19, police say a gunman fired at least five shots onto Hancock Playground in Fishtown.
“The third or fourth shot, I felt myself fall backward,” Lyons said.
Lyons was struck by a single bullet in her back, very close to her spine.
“My friends and I are in health care and I knew immediately what that meant when my legs went numb,” she said.
She was immediately paralyzed from her waist down, undergoing three major surgeries so far and about to start weeks and months of physical and occupational therapy.
“I have to consider doing everything differently, getting dressed, going to the bathroom, getting out of bed, sleeping,” she said.
With the shooter still out there, she’s worried for others in her neighborhood and is urging others to stand up for the innocent victims of gun violence.
“We live three blocks from there,” Lyons said, “so the impact is going to last. Essentially, I don’t feel safe going back home. … Gun violence is not a joke. We need to remember this when we’re going to vote.”
A 16-year-old was also shot once in the shoulder that night but is in stable condition.
There is a GoFundMe page set up to help with medical costs that Lyons will face.
If you have any information about the shooting, you’re asked to call the police.
CBS3’s Alicia Roberts reports.