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'Only the beginning'; MSU mass shooting survivor opens up about his experience

February 27, 2023
<p>Photos courtesy of Troy Forbush, taken by Ryan Inman.</p>

Photos courtesy of Troy Forbush, taken by Ryan Inman.

Photo by Courtesy Photo | The State News

Music education and vocal performance senior Troy Forbush is one of the five individuals who was critically injured and hospitalized during the mass shooting on Michigan State University's campus. 

On Sunday, Feb. 26, Forbush said he is ready to tell his story. 

In a social media post, he identified himself as one of the eight victims of the mass shooting. 

"I took a bullet to my chest, had a brush with death, and almost didn’t make it if it weren’t for the incredible doctors who saved my life in emergency surgery that night," Forbush wrote.

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Photos courtesy of Troy Forbush, taken by Ryan Inman.

Forbush spent a week in an intensive care unit and three additional days in Sparrow Hospital, before becoming the first student to be discharged. He said he lives in support of the four students who are still receiving medical treatment. 

Forbush, who is the social chair of the MSU chapter of the American Chorial Directors Association and studies within the MSU college of music, said his life is forever changed.

“There was a time when I used to dream of getting into this school— now, I represent it. My world has been turned upside down so suddenly, but I refuse to be a number, a statistic," he wrote. "Alongside my family, friends, community, university, and state government officials, we will enact change. I have a long journey of recovery ahead of me."

Forbush ended the post by stating that "this is only the beginning," and honoring Arielle Anderson, Alexandria Verner and Brian Fraser, who were killed in the shooting.

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Photos courtesy of Troy Forbush, taken by Ryan Inman.

Forbush said he "blessed to be the first individual discharged." One student remains in critical condition, one student is in fair condition and two students are in serious but stable condition at Sparrow Hospital. 

Three of the students who were injured have been identified through GoFundMes created by their families. The families of hospitality business junior Guadalupe Huapilla-Perez, environmental biology and zoology junior Nate Statly and international student John Hao are raising funds to help mitigate travel expenses and loss of wages. 

MSU Deputy Spokesperson Dan Olsen confirmed the university will be paying the hospital bills of the five students who were injured.

Culture editor Miranda Dunlap contributed to this report.

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