Project

Aftermath

3 Stories

Have you ever thought about what it’s like to get shot?

For eight months, reporters Amber Hunt of the Cincinnati Enquirer and Elizabeth Van Brocklin of The Trace traveled the country talking to people who know the answer too well. Their backgrounds and circumstances stories all vary, but they share one defining truth: Each had their lives changed by the path of a bullet.

Aftermath tells the stories of nine of America’s hundreds of thousands of gunshot survivors. The podcast debuts on May 22, with new episodes appearing every Tuesday. Please click below to subscribe.

May 22

‘Some people have a spirit of resilience’

Clai Lasher-Sommers of Westmoreland, New Hampshire, was shot in the back by her stepfather when she was 13 years old. She bears both physical scars and the memory of parents and neighbors who looked the other way.

May 22

‘I wasn’t going to leave her’

Best friends Carmen Alegria and Angelica Soto did everything together. That includes saving each other during the Las Vegas mass shooting.

Coming May 29

‘If I close my eyes I can see it’

Michael Green was just 12 years old, playing basketball across the street from his Detroit home, when he was caught in the crossfire of an ongoing feud. He still lives down the street from one of the alleged shooters, who was never tried.

Coming June 5

‘I don’t think violence will ever be away from my life’

Javier Arango remembers seeing his first dead body at the age of 4. Born in conflict-ravaged Colombia, he moved to Oakland for refuge — only to be paralyzed by a bullet.

Coming June 12

‘I was the gatekeeper’

At 23 years old, Layla Bush was excited to work her first real desk job in Seattle after college. Then a gunman opened fire at her office, killing one. She was the person who buzzed him inside.

Coming June 19

‘It’s like two lives lost’

For years after a group of men opened fire on her and her friends in Southeast Washington, D.C., Ra’Shauna Brown had nightmares about being shot again and again. One of the ways she took back control was to buy and master guns of her own.

Coming June 26

‘From being the king of the universe to being a worm’

Will Thomas spent years being angry after he was gunned down in a Cincinnati street and left paralyzed from the waist down. Now he’s ready to regroup and refocus.

Coming July 3

‘It stays with you’

When a classmate shot Hollan Holm in his Kentucky high school, he handled it with dark humor. After 20 years of not talking about it, another school shooting prompted him to speak out.

Featured Story

Introducing Aftermath, a New Podcast About Gun Violence Survivors

Ever imagine what it's like to be shot? Reporters Amber Hunt of the Cincinnati Enquirer and Elizabeth Van Brocklin of The Trace traveled the country talking to people who know too well.

By Elizabeth Van Brocklin

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Lead Reporter

Elizabeth Van Brocklin

Elizabeth Van Brocklin is a staff reporter at The Trace. She mainly covers urban violence, including the experiences and needs of gunshot survivors and institutions accountable to them.

This podcast series was produced in partnership with the Cincinnati Enquirer.