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Fourth-grader tells Congress how she survived Texas school shooting

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Posted at 8:23 AM, Jun 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-08 15:58:08-04

Miah Cerrillo recounted what happened when a gunman entered her classroom at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas last month killing 19 students and two teachers.

Miah, a fourth-grader at the school, was among a group of mass shooting survivors, families and advocates testifying before the House Oversight and Reform Committee. The hearing was held as lawmakers debate new gun laws in the wake of a slew of recent mass shootings.

Miah told Congress that she covered herself with a classmate’s blood during the shooting.

“We were just watching a movie,” she said. “And then she heard something and went to lock the door. He was in the hallway and then he came in and attacked. And then (the teacher) went to the back of the room and she told us to go hide. And then we went to go hide behind my teacher’s desk and behind the backpacks and then he shot the little window. And then he went to the other classroom, and there was a door between our classrooms and he went through there and shot my teacher and killed my teacher and he shot her in the head.

“And then he shot some of my classmates and the whiteboard. When I went to the backpacks, he shot my friend that was next to me and I thought he was gonna come back into the room, so I grabbed the blood and I put it all over me. And I stayed quiet and then called 911.”

Miah said she told the 911 dispatcher that she “needed help.”

She added that she does not feel safe in school and believes it could happen again.

Dr. Roy Guerrero, who was also among those testifying on Wednesday, treated Miah at the hospital.

“As I entered the ER, the first casualty I came across was Miah Cerrillo,” he said. “She was sitting in the hallway with her face still, still in shock but her whole body shaking from the adrenaline coursing through it. The white Lilo & Stitch shirt that she wore was covered in blood and her shoulder was bleeding from the shrapnel injury. Sweet Miah I have known my whole life. As a baby, she survived liver surgeries against all odds, and once again, she is here is a survivor, inspiring us with her story today and her bravery.

“When I saw Miah sitting there, I remembered sitting her parents outside, so after seeing the parents outside, I raced outside to let her see that she was alive.”

Guerrero had parting words for the lawmakers in the room.

"I chose to be a pediatrician, I chose to take care of children, keeping them safe from preventable diseases I can do," he said. "Keeping them safe from bacteria and brittle bones I can do. But making sure our children are safe from guns, that is the job of our politicians and leaders. In this case, you are the doctors and our country is a patient. We are lying on the operating table, riddled with bullets like the children of Robb Elementary and so many other schools. We are bleeding out and you are not there. My oath as a doctor means I signed up to save lives. I do my job, and I guess it turns out that I am here to plead. To beg, to plead, please do yours."

Guerrero wasn't the only person at the hearing calling for lawmakers to take action. The mother of Lexi Rubio, who was killed at Robb Elementary, urged lawmakers to prevent future mass shootings.

"We seek a ban on assault rifles and high-capacity magazines. We understand that for some reason, to some people, to people with money, to people who fund political campaigns, that guns are more important than children. So, at this moment we ask for progress," Kimberly Rubio said.