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Aurora Theater Shooting Victim Heals By Coaching Other

11:56 PM, Dec 9, 2012   |    comments
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AURORA (KUSA) - It has been nearly five months since a gunman opened fire inside Theater 9 and nearly five months since Jarell Brooks was shot in the leg while shielding a woman and her children.

It has been a long road for Brooks and many other victims. He was in a wheelchair for weeks and had frequent trips to the hospital. His gunshot wound has healed, but healing emotionally is his new challenge.

"It's hard, I have flash backs sometimes but I try not to think about it," Brooks said.

Brooks coaches the Overland Unified Sports Basketball team. It's a program for students who are developmentally disabled. He does it because he wants to help the athletes get better but he also does it as a way of healing.

"It gets my mind off of me trying to cope with everything that's happened," Brooks said.

Brooks and his team meet every Saturday at Overland high school where they practice. The team plays several other schools with Unified programs in the area and they also have an opportunity to play in the state championship. It's fun for the players, but for Brooks it takes his mind away from the emotional trauma the theater shooting left behind. He says helping others makes him feel better and makes his days a little easier. After all, Brooks says it's a good way to pay it forward after so many people helped him while he was recovering from his injury.

"This is kind of the emotional effect that brings out the change in me. It inspires me to move on more and more for sure," Brooks said.


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