LEE’S SUMMIT, Mo. — It was one year ago Sunday that an accidental shooting left a Lee’s Summit teenager with a bullet wound to the head. Now Alyssa Howe is 14 years old, a freshman in high school and remarkably almost fully recovered. Perhaps even more surprisingly, she isn’t angry or depressed about the accident that changed her life.
Howe’s friends gathered to pray for her and made T-shirts to help her. All the while, Alyssa was enduring surgeries and long days in the hospital.
While she says those days were difficult, she’s since overcome the most trying time of her life.
“There was a lot of moments that I felt like, ‘Yeah, this is crazy. Why is this happening to me?” Howe explained.
She said she’s not angry about the accident.
“That’s the day that I survived,” Howe said.
Howe can’t hear well in one ear, and some of her peripheral vision is gone, but she’s alive, socializing with her friends and doing well in school.
“I’m really lucky to be able to have what I do have now, rather than what could have been the consequences,” she said. “Makes me feel blessed.”
She knows not everyone has the same outcome, so she’s doing what she can to prevent future accidental shootings.
“I’m trying to get more of a gun safety awareness around other people since there have been so many other accidents lately with guns and little kids,” she said. “I’m trying to help prevent it as much as possible so no one has to go through what I have.”
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She’s giving out her “Ally Awareness” bracelets and telling everyone she knows that guns aren’t toys. Ally also plans to volunteer for Children’s Mercy Hospital soon. She says volunteers made a big difference for her while she was at Children’s Mercy. Ally hopes to be able to play soccer in the spring. In the meantime, she’ll continue doing well in school and working toward her goal of being a radio or television host.