CBS 2’s Marissa Parra sat down with Gisselle Zamago and her family on Tuesday to talk about how life will never be the same.
The Zamago family calls Gisselle “un milagro” – a miracle.
And while you couldn’t tell by looking at her right now, under Gisselle’s coat collar is the scar from a gunshot wound.
On a snowy Halloween, Gisselle was dressed as Minnie Mouse as she trick-or-treated with her father and siblings on 26th Street near Lawndale Avenue in Little Village – when she was shot in the neck.
“I seen a little girl on the floor,” said Benny Estrada. “Her dad was holding her.”
Gisselle’s father said the past few weeks have been a nightmare.
“When we were in the hospital, it was an ugly thing,” Rigoberto Zamago said in Spanish.
It was easy to can tell from her nervous glances to her mom that while Gisselle might be out of the hospital, the road to recovery is just beginning. She’s afraid to leave the house.
“It’s sad. Before, she would want to play outside with her cousins,” Rigoberto Zamago said in Spanish. “Now, when we leave the house, we leave in fear.”
And for the Zamagos, the holiday that is supposed to be family friendly will never be the same.
“We will, for the most part, be inside and do things like dress up – same as Halloween, but a party inside – for the kids, for my nieces and nephews, for her,” Rigoberto Zamago said.
And while Gisselle’s Halloween fun was cut short, the people in Little Village are coming together to get donations to her family – something to bring her extra smiles to make up for the nightmare she has endured.
A new coat and “palomitas” – popcorn – for 7-yo Gisselle
Anything to bring a smile to the face of a girl whose Halloween was ruined and turned into a nightmare fighting for her life
Hear from her and her family at 6 on @cbschicago pic.twitter.com/JygkZLG9VG
— Marissa Parra (@MarParNews) November 19, 2019
“Everybody’s super excited to see her home,” Estrada said. “She’s our neighborhood hero, to be honest with you. She is.”
A 15-year-old boy is being held in juvenile custody on attempted murder and aggravated battery in the shooting that wounded Gisselle.
Meanwhile, the New Life Community Church said it is looking for donations to give Gisselle and her siblings toys and clothes for the holidays and financial support for the family.
The church says people can help in the following ways:
• Give online at newlifecenters.org/give. Select “general fund,” but in the notes, put, “Gisselle emergency fund. “ All donations received will go directly to support the family.
• Donate new clothes or toys for Gisselle and her family. Clothes are needed for a 7¬-year-old girl (size 7/8 clothes, size 1 shoe); 5-year-old boy (size 6 clothes, size 12 children’s shoe); a 12-year-old boy (size small clothes, size 5 shoe); and a 17-year-old boy (size medium clothes, size 9 shoe). Used clothes are not being accepted. Clothes can be dropped off at New Life at 2657 S. Lawndale Ave.
• Donate Target, grocery, store, or restaurant gift cards for the family at New Life.