AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – A man injured in the Aurora movie shooting over the summer was greeted back at work this week with streamers and some jokes from co-workers.
Pierce O’Farrill was in the third row of Theater 9 at the Century 16 movie theater in Aurora on July 20 when the mass shooting took place. The gunman shot him in the foot twice and another bullet broke his arm in half.
Surgeries and serious infections kept him in the hospital for weeks, and then after an extended recovery at home he was finally ready to head back to his office.
O’Farrill is in charge of used vehicle donations for the Denver Rescue Mission. His loving co-workers contributed a hundred sick days so he could be paid while he recovered.
“It’s just such a blessing being back here,” said O’Farrill, who still wears a brace on his upper arm.
O’Farrill told CBS4 he was sure he would die like 12 others did during the mass shooting. He said he could feel the gunman standing over him, but somehow he was spared.
“The chance to see another beautiful Colorado day is something at one point I didn’t think I was going to see again,” he said.
O’Farrill says he’s glad he’s able to continue his devotion to God and to helping others. He also said forgiveness comes easy for him.
“I can’t imagine what that would be like living a life of pure hatred and wanting to hurt people,” said O’Farrill, referring to the shooter.
O’Farrill has spoken at churches about his faith and about good overcoming evil and about forgiveness and hope. He said he plans to climb some 14ers and play some basketball when his arm heals a bit more. For now, he’s just enjoying his second chance at life. He’s even gone back to see some movies in the theaters.
“I wake up every day. I thank to lord for every day. I just trust the path he puts at my feet,” he said.
As for the joke from the co-workers, a huge stack of papers was waiting for O’Farrill on his desk when he got back and everything was marked “Urgent.” So much for easing him back into things!