/  06.12.2022

A fourth-grader has been hospitalized after nearly suffering a heart attack while visiting a memorial for her best friend who died during the Robb Elementary School shooting in Uvalde, Texas.

The survivor Illiana Treviño,11 was protected by her best friend Amerie Jo Garzo,10 from bullies. “I think it’s just from a broken heart that we need to work on healing,” Illiana mom Jessica Treviño told People Magazine. “Everything just broke her in half, and she feels the fear of being bullied again.”

On May 31, the fourth-grader’s heart rate increased when she went to place flowers and a teddy bear at the memorial for Garza, one of 19 children and two teachers that were killed. Jessica became concerned and took her daughter to the hospital. She was told by doctors that her daughter had nearly gone into cardiac arrest. Jessica told People Magazine that Illiana had no other known medical conditions and was transferred to Methodist Children’s Hospital in San Antonio.

“Her heart [rate] skyrocketed because she couldn’t take the trauma,” Jessica told People, adding her daughter could not handle the “pain” of what had happened.

Illiana’s family started a GoFundMe page to help with hospital fees. As of right now, the fundraiser has exceeded its $25,000 goal, reaching nearly $43,000. On the GoFundMe page, the family wrote that the medication Illiana has been given by doctors is not working. “The Doctors biggest worry is that she might go into cardiac arrest. We are barely seeing the ripples side effects of what this tragic incident has brought to this community,” the family wrote.

Illiana has been moved out of the ICU, although Jessica said doctors now believe her daughter shows signs of post-traumatic stress disorder and acute stress from the trauma she suffered.

According to People Magazine, Illiana escaped the May 24 school shooting unharmed after the gunman walked past her classroom. Her best friend Garza was shot when she tried to dial 911 on her cellphone. “She is still dealing with some hard issues,” Jessica told People. “And it’s a long road to recovery.”


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