Chivers, the story of Farrah, an Aurora survivor (10 Photos)

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Last Friday in the Daily Afternoon Randomness I asked the Chivers for a favor. I believed that, in the wake of the tragic shooting in Aurora, CO there must be something theCHIVE community can do to help an innocent victim who needs our help the most. Valuable info began pouring in from our Colorado Chivers and one victim's name began to stand out in the email subject lines: Farrah.

Thanks again to our vigilant CO Chivers (you know who you are). Without you, none of what's about to happen would be possible.

None of what I'm about to say, however, will be easy to read. This is the story of a survivor:

Farrah Soudani, her boyfriend Mike White, and Mike's father Mike Sr. have a tradition; they go to the 'late nights' when big movies open. On Thursday July 19th, the happy trio and some family friends walked into theatre 9 in Aurora, CO to watch the late showing of Batman: The Dark Knight.

15 minutes into the film, something that resembled a balloon was hurled down the right hand side of the theater, where Farrah was seated two seats from the isle. Suddenly, popping sounds echoed through the theater. Many assumed a prankster had set off fireworks in the theater, but Mike Sr., an Air Force Veteran, knew better. The theater was under attack.

Mike Sr. grabbed Mike and Farrah by their heads and yelled "Get Down! Get Down!" just as the 'balloon' exploded.

I spoke to Victoria Albright, a close family friend and author of Farrah's donation page. Victoria told me how Farrah described the first, frantic moments:

"I remember seeing a bright flash, and a bang bang bang."

The explosive ripped a 5" hole through Farrah's abdomen and demolished her left leg. Initial reports would say Farrah was shot, but the wounds indicate a shrapnel penetration. Farrah fell to the ground.

A hail of gunfire rained on the trio as the gunman moved closer. Mike was shot shielding Farrah. The bullet ripped through his right shoulder, piercing his lung and finally exiting his back. Mike continued to lay beside Farrah, holding her intestines inside her body.

Mike Sr. saw the gunman making his way from the 8th row down the isle, closing in on the injured couple. In a moment of astonishing heroism, Mike Sr. draped himself across Farrah to protect her. Michael Sr. said:

"This gunman's going to get me, I know I'm going to get shot. I give up my body to save her. He's going to shoot me, he's not going to shoot the girl."

Suddenly, the gunman stopped and changed his course enabling Michael Sr. precious moments to crawl out of the theater to get help. Farrah was rushed to the hospital in critical condition. The officer who transported Farrah to the hospital, holding her side the entire time, described Farrah as "one tough cookie."

The surgeries begin:

Farrah's wounds are extensive. Yesterday she had surgery to repair her left calf and exploritory surgeries on her midsection to determine the next course of action. Both surgeries went well but there will be many more. Farrah suffered significant damage to her left calf and her left abdomen is 'permanently affected.' Farrah's amazing mother, Heidi, rarely leaves her side. Plastic surgeries will be needed for years to come. Farrah has no insurance.

The healing begins:

When the first images from the Aurora massacre hit the news, I stared blankly at my TV. A voice in the back of my head told me the Chivers would be called upon to help. I was uncertain of what capacity we'd be needed, but I was certain the Chivers would rise to meet the gravity of the occasion.

Things are clear now, a family and their their fragile daughter needs our help. And while our thoughts and prayers are with all the victims of this senseless violence, today is for Farrah.

The global media attention and Presidential visit has made Farrah famous and Mike Sr. a national hero, but it hasn't translated into the one thing this family needs the most: financial help. Only $37,000 of their $100,000 goal has been raised. theCHIVERS are about to adjust the sails on that one.

The goal is $100,000. I'm told Ferrah's medical bills will easily exceed the target amount which is fine, we all know the Chivers see financial goals much like a lonely stop sign on an empty country road - something briefly regarded before hitting the accelerator.

We're not only going to help a survivor recover, but in so doing we will play a small part in the overall healing process in Aurora; helping usher out evil and enabling a community to rebuild physically and emotionally. Our Colorado Chivers have provided the compass to find Farrah. Now it's time to follow their lead.

You know what to do, don't stop giving until the machine breaks.

Farrah's donation page RIGHT HERE.

UPDATE: Due the the volume of donations, the donation page is refreshing slowly so the finantial totals don't yet reflect the amount raised, which is amazing. Be patient! More updates to come.

UPDATE #2: We just spoke to the founder and CEO of Go Fund Me, he's been very helpful by allocating server strength to Farrah's page to handle the donation load. We asked him if there was a record donation amount in a single hour. He responded, "There was, but theCHIVE shattered that record just now." We have surpassed the $60,000 amount in less than an hour.

Update #3: At the one hour mark, donations total $74,000. Unreal. Keep going!

Update #4: $85,000

Update #5: $95,000. The final push!

UPDATE #6: $100,000 in an hour and a half. This is unfreakingbelievable.

Update #7: $120,000. And the Chivers have hit the accelerator.

Update #8: $135,000. Also, we linked to hero Michael White's donation page and theCHIVER's have almost raised $10,000 for him!

Update #9: $140,000

For updates on Farrah’s condition and to make a donation, CLICK HERE.

An email has been set up, messagetofarrah [at] comcast [dot] com, if you want to contact Farrah to offer any kind words.

Watch the Dateline video of Farrah’s story below

UPDATE: Due the the volume of donations, the donation page is refreshing slowly so the financial totals don’t yet reflect the amount raised, which is amazing. Be patient! More updates to come.

UPDATE #2: We just spoke to the founder and CEO of Go Fund Me, he’s been very helpful by allocating server strength to Farrah’s page to handle the donation load. We asked him if there was a record donation amount in a single hour. He responded, “There was, but theCHIVE shattered that record just now.” We have surpassed the $60,000 amount in less than an hour.

Update #3: At the one hour mark, donations total $74,000. Unreal. Keep going!

Update #4: $85,000

Update #5: $95,000. The final push!

UPDATE #6: $100,000 in an hour and a half. This is unfreakingbelievable.

Update #7: $120,000. And the Chivers have hit the accelerator.

Update #8: $135,000. Also, we linked to hero Michael White’s donation page and theCHIVER’s have almost raised $10,000 for him!

Update #9: $140,000

  • Tom_McG

    Are there any Chivers with the juice to ensure Farrah and the rest won't have income tax problems and the money really will go to covering the medical costs rather than the IRS?

  • Dantegeek34

    You shouldn't have to get shot by a psycho asshole to meet the President.
    I wish you, and everyone touched by this tragedy, only the best.
    KCCO as best you can. Feel better.

  • naluukti

    Michael, Farrah, Mr. White, you have the prayers of this stranger. I am so glad you made it through, and that the Chive has blown away the goal it set to help you. I hope this covers not only the initial medical bills, but any post-care like counselling and physiotherapy as well.

    Sincerely,

    A Canadian Chiver

  • Heather

    Please also help Farrah's boyfriend Mike! Here is the link to his GO fund account. He is only at $14,000. THANK YOU ALL!!!!! http://www.gofundme.com/wa2ko

  • sid206

    Chivers are amazing!

  • https://www.facebook.com/danny.a.schick Danny Schick

    Hi John, I was just reading, and looking through this page – and noticed that the email address (messagetofarrah@comcast.com) that you have noted is incorrect. It should be messagetofarrah@comcast.net:)

  • Friend

    From a friend: http://jamisonstragedy.blogspot.com/

    The past week has been one of the hardest my family has ever had to endure and I don't know that I would have gotten through it without all of you. Your kind words, constant prayers, and positive energy have really made all of the difference. You guys have been beyond amazing. This community should be proud of itself. All of you have been asking what you can do to help and until now I haven't had an answer. My cousin Jamison and his girlfriend Ashley have experienced so much physical and emotional trauma and I want to do whatever I can to help them. My family has set up a donation site through paypal to make the long road ahead of them a little easier. These funds will help cover medical costs, funeral costs for Veronica, as well as other needs like Ashley's wheelchair/wheelchair access in her home, etc. If you would like to help, any donations will be so appreciated. If you cannot donate then please keep sending your prayers and good vibes our way and to the other victims. Please share this if you know of anyone who would like to help.

  • Tomatso

    Donated. You are in all our minds Farrah and Matt. And Aurora. Get well soon, from Perth, Western Australia.

  • Anthony

    BEST DAMN SITE ON THE INTERNET! thank you for letting me come here!

  • https://www.facebook.com/JoshJoshua88 Joshua Sloat

    I am proud to be a part of theChive community. I wish I could have donated more, but luckily payday is only 6 hours away. We got you covered Farrah, sleep well and KCCO.

  • JohnnyDingo

    This is Farrah's friend and needs our help. We have surpassed Farrah's target so please if you are donating consider http://www.gofundme.com/wa2ko
    This was even posted on farrah's donation page so it's just not me asking.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ness.mcshibby Ness McShibby

    donation sent.. KCCO from Sydney, Australia

  • Ender7

    Damn dust in my eyes!

  • BRODIE

    This is why I Chive and as a rule of thumb, consider every Chiver I meet, a decent human being who I can call a friend.

  • Taws

    I'm often asked why I like the chive so much… I think it's hard to see why one wouldn't. KCCO!

  • http://androidforums.com/lounge/458043-galaxy-nexus-watering-hole-359.html#post4729198 Galaxy Nexus Watering Hole - Page 359 - Android Forums

    […] A survivors story of the Aurora shooting. The Chive helped raise $100,000 in an hour and a half. Chivers, the story of Farrah, an Aurora survivor (10 Photos) : theCHIVE […]

  • https://www.facebook.com/RaymondLReynolds Ray Reynolds

    Let's shatter this goal and hit 200k!! I'm proud to call my self a Chiver more so today then ever after seeing what we can do! KCCO!

  • http://twitter.com/TheRealWHub @TheRealWHub

    Donated. KCCO from the Oregon coast!

  • Alex_5280

    Such a horrible tragedy right in my back yard, but it is unbelievable to see the nation come together in times like this, and even more so this online community. This makes me damn proud to be a Chiver, and as I could never begin to speak for the victims of this tragedy as I was not there, as a Coloradan, I just want to say thank you, to every one. KCCO.

  • Craig_619

    Broke Chiver just donated my plasma money! Get well soon Farrah. KCCO!

  • Joanna

    Sending love from New Zealand – Chivers are worldwide!!!! KCCO xo

  • Jono

    KCCO COVA

  • https://www.facebook.com/Aremihc David Holt

    We should get working on her boyfriend. The general fund is one thing, but her boyfriend was shot trying to protect her and needs our help too. http://www.gofundme.com/wa2ko Let's light up another one. Show them what TheChive is as a community.

    • https://www.facebook.com/bob.gusky Bob Gusky

      Ditto! I sent the same to his fund…hopefully others will too!

  • John

    Try to send her a donation from the Nederlands, but cant pay on the site with Visa. Does someone have an idea how i can still donate?

  • Tim T.

    May God bless you and give you a speedy recovery. It's nice to know that even with all the BS in this world, we can still band together to do good for others. The chive is awesome and so are all of our fellow chivers and loyal chivettes like Farrah. Keep calm and chive on Farrah.

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