Gay man paralysed from the shoulders down after being shot in the spine while leaving a nightclub
A gay man has been left paralysed from the shoulders down after he was shot in the spine outside a nightclub in North Carolina.
Pedro Ventura was visiting the city of Asheville when the attack occurred.
Ventura – who lives in Los Angeles – was standing outside Scandals Nightclub on 5 October at 2am waiting for an Uber when a gunman drove past and fired into the crowd. Police do not yet know who the gunman is or if he was shooting at a particular target. It is thought that Ventura was not specifically targeted.
Police are now offering a $5,000 reward to anyone who provides information that leads to an arrest in the case.
Gay man Pedro Ventura is ‘mentally very much there’, but is paralysed.
Ventura’s partner Ezra Glenn told the Citizen Times earlier this week that Ventura still requires a ventilator to breathe and that he is paralysed from the shoulders down.
“He’s mentally very much there, which we’re happy about,” Glenn said.
“It’s very unclear why this happened, but it is pretty clear that Pedro was not the intended target, if there was one,” he added.
The road to recovery for Pedro will be long, but he is dedicated to continuing his journey and living a full life.
Glenn has since set up a GoFundMe page to help raise funds to cover Ventura’s medical expenses. He has raised more than $470,000 and is aiming to raise $600,000.
Writing on the fundraising page, Glenn said that there were up to 300 people on the street when the shooting occurred – but said that his boyfriend was the only person shot.
The bullet shattered parts of Ventura’s spine and severed his spinal cord.
He will have a long road to recovery.
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“It is a miracle that he is alive, and the progress he has already made towards recovery – including regaining partial control of his breathing and movement in his shoulders – has defied doctors’ expectations,” he wrote.
“The road to recovery for Pedro will be long, but he is dedicated to continuing his journey and living a full life.
“As we, his immediate family, are still in the wake of this devastating tragedy, it’s difficult to imagine what the future holds, but we know that Pedro will never cease to be the brilliant, beautiful, hardworking, and vivacious man that he is. We simply need to be able to support him along that journey.”
He also said that gay man Ventura comes from “a working class family” and the “enormous cost of lifelong care” is looming over them.
“Even if it reaches millions of dollars, this fundraiser won’t come close to what we will ultimately need to afford the quality of life that Pedro deserves.
“The outpouring of support has lifted Pedro’s spirits dramatically. It’s been nothing short of moving to watch.”