Nurse shot in Chesapeake talks from the hospital

Posted at 4:46 PM, Jun 22, 2012
and last updated 2012-06-22 20:28:23-04

A nurse shot in a Chesapeake home while caring for a patient Wednesday morning is talking about the incident from her hospital room.

Carolyn Hughey was changing Lorin Willis' bandages when a stray bullet pierced the house and hit Hughey in the abdomen.

Chesapeake Police think the bullet that hit Hughey came from a high-powered rifle at a distance.

They still don't know who pulled the trigger.

"It didn’t dawn on me that I was shot. I just started feeling this warm sensation in my belly and I was like 'what in the world,'" Hughey explained. "It was not until I was pulling my shirt up and looked down did I see that I had been shot."

Hughey says Willis began applying pressure to the wound and reassuring her that help was on the way.

"He talked to me and told me everything was going to be okay. Just hang in there girl, just hang in there, he kept saying. I’ll never forget him saying that," Hughey said.

Hughey's nurse training kicked in and she knew that had the bullet hit just an inch lower or higher, that she might not be alive.

"I looked down and told myself: upper abdomen. It didn’t hit my heart. My lungs are good and I can still breath, lay there and be still is what I told myself," Hughey said.

The entire time she waited for help, images of her 14-year-old-daughter Brianna flashed through her mind.

"I just kept praying to God: just let me see her one more time. If this is it, just let me see her one more time that’s all I wanted just to see her one more time," Hughey said through tears.

Hughey says she's not angry about the shooting and says it's all part of God's plan for her.

"It happened to me for a reason. I don’t know what that reason is and only God knows but I feel like I was spared for a reason." 

Hughey expects to be in the hospital for another week and then faces months of physical therapy, but says she is determined to get back to work quickly.

"I’m not going to let one thing that’s happened keep me from the one thing that I loved to do and that’s take care of people," Hughey said.

The shooting is also delaying a major life event. Hughey was supposed to get married on July 19, but says the wedding will have to wait until she recovers.