Las Vegas Victim, 27, Wakes from Coma and Takes First Steps After Being Shot in the Head
Tina Frost was at the concert on the Vegas strip when a gunman opened fire from his nearby hotel suite killing 58 and injuring hundreds of others.
This article originally appeared on People.com.
A 27-year-old victim of the Las Vegas mass shooting has woken from a coma and taken her first steps — with some help — about two weeks after she was shot in the head during the Oct. 1 massacre at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival, PEOPLE confirms.
Tina Frost was at the outdoor concert on the Vegas strip that Sunday night when a gunman opened fire from his nearby hotel suite on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay casino, killing 58 and injuring hundreds of others.
Frost — reportedly an accountant and Maryland native who had relocated to San Diego — was struck in the head and had to have her right eye removed, her mother, Mary Watson Moreland, wrote on a GoFundMe page set up to financially support her recovery.
Frost was in a coma after being hit by the bullet, according to the Las Vegas Review Journal.
On Friday night, Moreland shared an update that her daughter had woken up.
“She opens her left eye just a lil and looks all around the room at us, taps her feet whenever music is playing, continues to squeeze our hands, and even gives [her boyfriend] Austin a thumbs up when asked,” Moreland wrote.
“She sometimes taps to music and also took her first steps today with the assistance of the nurses – 3 steps to the chair and 3 steps back to the bed,” Moreland continued. “She’s obviously anxious to get her wobble back on.”
Family friend Amy Klinger tells PEOPLE that doctors are encouraged by Frost’s progress.
“There is a 90 percent mortality rate with [gunshots] to the head, and she is a little bit of a medical miracle,” Klinger says. “Initially the doctor was saying they were hoping to see progress in a year, and what she has been able to show us in two weeks is amazing.”
“She is showing signs of awakeness and awareness,” Klinger says of Frost. “She started showing signs of responsiveness the middle of last week.”
Klinger says that late last week, Frost went off her ventilator for a sustained period of time: “She was able to breathe on her own for six hours and that is a big accomplishment.”
What’s more, Klinger confirms, Frost on Friday was able to take “baby steps, with a lot of assistance, from the bed to the chair” about two and a half feet away. Moreland told the Review Journal much the same in an interview on Saturday. She said Frost woke up on Thursday.
While Frost has been responsive to others, she has yet to speak, according to Klinger.
“She has not responded verbally to instructions, but she has been given instructions verbally and has followed those commands,” she says.
Still, Klinger says, “There is no way of knowing what the brain damage is until she is more fully awake.”
The GoFundMe campaign has raised more than $550,000 as of Monday evening, far surpassing its goal of $50,000.
According to the Review Journal, Frost was attending the Route 91 Harvest festival with her boyfriend, Austin Hughes, and several friends. The group was enjoying the show near the front of the crowd when gunfire began around 10 p.m.
They began to run, but it wasn’t long before Frost was hit.
With the help of an off-duty fireman, she was brought to the nearby Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center in Vegas.
Sunrise’s Dr. Keith Blum told the Review Journal that Frost underwent a three-hour surgery, and he described her survival as “miraculous.”
“She’ll have pieces of the bullet in her brain forever. But her vitals are stable, and she’s breathing on her own a little,” Moreland, Frost’s mother, told the newspaper last week, noting that “sometimes she hears me when I talk and squeezes my hand.”
Klinger tells PEOPLE that Frost was taken by air ambulance to a hospital in Baltimore on Sunday morning. She was accompanied on the plane by her mom and boyfriend, while her dad and younger sister flew separately and met them at the hospital.
“They wanted to find the best location to handle the surgeries, neurological therapies and reconstruction,” she says. “She is a sweetheart, an incredible friend, daughter and girlfriend. She is a hard worker and an incredibly dedicated athlete. She is an all-American girl. She was living a really full life and there is hope with prayers and encouragement that she will be back to that one day.”
Dr. Blum said Frost was awake before she was flown to Maryland, the Review Journal reports.
Efforts to reach her family have been unsuccessful, and Klinger says relatives including her mother have been too focused on Frost’s recovery to speak about what happened.
However, the family has continued to post updates about Frost’s progress on social media.
Late Sunday, Frost’s father, Rich Frost, posted a link to a news story about her being moved to Maryland. He wrote, “Big big hill in her marathon, but once again it was conquered and she continues to be in good hands, and back home by many friends and family.”
“I was told 90 percent of those shot as she was die,” Rich told the Review Journal last week. “Well, it looks like she’s in the 10 percent. … Slowly but surely she’s making progress.”
In a statement to PEOPLE, Tina’s employer, Ernst & Young, said she “has inspired us with her courage and strength.”
“Our EY family across the world has closely followed Tina’s progress,” the statement continued, “and, together with the firm, has committed our support to Tina and her family so they can stay focused on her recovery.”