One month after Don Carter Lanes shooting, 14-year-old survivor hopes to use his story to help others

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Tuesday marks once month since a gunman took three men’s lives and injured three others at Don Carter Lanes in Rockford.

A few days after the attack, Alexis Carpello spoke with 14-year-old Printess Wynn’s family. He was shot in the face.

Weeks later, his sister tells Alexis that the teen hopes to turn the tragedy into a way to bring comfort to victims around the world.

“Surprisingly his spirit is really good, he’s just happy to be alive,” said Printess’s sister, Lavonda Wynn. “To come that close to death, of course, you have an appreciation of life.”

The 14-year-old was one of the six victims shot on December 26th, 2020 at Don Carter Lanes. He was there waiting for food.

“I think that considering he was one of the first ones to get shot and it was a direct contact shooting, I believe that considering that, we are blessed,” his sister added.

Lavonda says a month later, he is still trying to look at life as a ‘glass half full.’

“I haven’t heard him complain at all about anything,” she said. “He’s just so positive and he’s working every day on his smile because he wants his smile to be back the way it used to be.”

A bullet from the shooting is still lodged in Printess’s face. However, Lovonda tells us her brother’s speech has improved since we last spoke.

“We’re not even trying to be victims right now, we’re trying just to be grateful that he’s alive,” she explained.

Lavonda says that Printess hopes to become a motivational speaker, helping victims get through situations similar to this.

“Instead of being a victim about it, we are actually listening to Printess’s ideas about the whole situation. He wants to help other people like this,” Lavonda said. “He wants to help other young victims of situations just like this one–to let them know you’re not alone. [To say] ‘I’ve been through it, we can get through it together,’ and I’m all about supporting him.”

To donate directly to Printess’s family, click here.

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