Updated: August 27, 2021 06:45 PM
Created: August 27, 2021 06:23 PM
The search for answers continues after seven people were shot in Uptown Minneapolis early Thursday morning. One of the victims was Mykia Carpenter.
"She is compassionate. She is a leader," Tera Welch, Carpenter's cousin, said.
A cheerleader, basketball player, volleyball player and straight-A student, Carpenter is a teen of many talents.
The North High School graduate was heading off to college in Chicago with a goal to become a nurse. Those dreams are now on hold.
"This is something I never thought we would ever have to go through in our lifetime," Welch said.
Before the shooting, the 18-year-old was leaving work in Uptown near the intersection of West Lake Street and Lyndale Avenue. Seconds later, Welch said Carpenter was caught in the crossfire.
"The bullet went through her neck and damaged her artery, trachea and her vocal cords," Welch said. "My heart was just shattered."
Her injury placed her in a nine-hour surgery. She's currently using a dry erase board and marker to communicate with family. The future of using her voice again is unknown.
Around 12:20 a.m. Thursday morning, Minneapolis police said two people were shooting at each other outside of a business on Lyndale Avenue, leaving seven people injured. Officials described the scene as "very chaotic."
"Some people's irresponsible actions took away and delayed the dreams of another, and that's not fair. That shouldn't happen to anybody," Welch said.
Carpenter's family members are calling on community leaders to step up and take action.
"How many times does this have to happen until we become proactive rather than reactive?" Welch said.
Senseless violence put Mykia's life on a detour but Welch is confident her cousin will get back on track.
"She is an amazing person who will move mountains when she is ready," Welch said.
A GoFundMe was set up to help the family with medical bills.
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