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Florida shooting triggers emotions for 1 October survivors

Posted: 7:06 PM, Feb 15, 2018
Updated: 2018-02-16 13:06:34Z

Some survivors of the 1 October shooting say hearing the news of the school shooting in Florida brought back painful emotions.

Christine Caria tells 13 Action News since 1 October, she's been slowly making progress, doing physical therapy and reaching out to other survivors; but says she broke down hearing the news yesterday.

Caria says she was running errands when she got the push alerts on her phone. 

"I was completely back to when it happened," she says. 

Caria broke down in the middle of the store.

"I sat in the corner of their bathroom shaking and crying and throwing up for approximately 2 hours," she says.

She and other survivors say since the shooting, one thing that's helped them heal is fighting for common sense gun reforms.

"You think that it can't happen to you but it will," says survivor Heather Gooze. 

What's not helped has been the barrage of social media. 

"If I hear 'thoughts and prayers' one more time," I'm going to vomit," Caria says.

They've joined alongside survivors of other shootings like Virginia Tech and Sandy Hook to support each other in their efforts for change. They say it's also helped in their own healing process.

"Because we're trying to take action, we're trying to help other people, we're helping ourselves," Gooze says.

RELATED: Resiliency center offering support to 1 October survivors affected by Florida shooting

But it's not just survivors of 1 October being impacted.  Dr. Beth Creel says even those in Las Vegas feeling numbness after this latest shooting can be a sign of PTSD.

"This is about almost disassociating and detaching because something is so traumatic it's hard for the brain to process," she says.

The 1 October survivors are planning a vigil for Friday night at 7 p.m. at the memorial garden downtown.

RELATED: CCSD encourages parents to download app after Florida shooting