Kathy Shorr’s SHOT: 101 Survivors of Gun Violence in America

I mentioned in another post, Kathy Shorr’s beautiful photo book SHOT: 101 Survivors of gun violence in America shows the beautiful human faces of survivors of American gun violence. You should buy a copy to support such humane work.

Photo courtesy of Kathy Shorr

As I mention over at healthinsurance.org,  Shorr’s book provides portraits and brief stories of 101 survivors of gun violence. Her photographs convey the lacerating damage firearms inflict.

I recently met two of the survivors, Mariam Pare and Ondelee Parteet, at a panel on gun violence. There are some nice pictures below the fold.

Both of them required years of costly rehabilitation and costly surgeries.  Tens of thousands of Americans every year experience serious gunshot wounds similar to that experienced by Rep. Steve Scalise and the people chronicled in Shorr’s book. If AHCA passes, it will leave millions of Americans uninsured. We should ask what will happen to gunshot survivors with similarly severe wounds who lack insurance coverage.

The young man in the wheelchair is Ondelee Parteet.  He was shot in the face by a 14-year-old boy after an incident at a party. He’s a charismatic motivational speaker. I expect great things from him.

Ondelee Parteet, by Kathy Shorr

Mariam Pare was shot in the neck while stopped at a traffic light in an apparent random shooting that was never solved. Despite injuries that left her quadriplegic, she remains an accomplished artist. She uses her mouth to paint. I am envious that she has apparently mastered the mysteries of Photoshop.

Check out her gallery here. It’s amazing stuff.

And no. That’s not me in the below photograph.

Photo courtesy Mariam Pare.


Photo courtesy Mariam Pare

Author: Harold Pollack

Harold Pollack is Helen Ross Professor of Social Service Administration at the University of Chicago. He has served on three expert committees of the National Academies of Science. His recent research appears in such journals as Addiction, Journal of the American Medical Association, and American Journal of Public Health. He writes regularly on HIV prevention, crime and drug policy, health reform, and disability policy for American Prospect, tnr.com, and other news outlets. His essay, "Lessons from an Emergency Room Nightmare" was selected for the collection The Best American Medical Writing, 2009. He recently participated, with zero critical acclaim, in the University of Chicago's annual Latke-Hamentaschen debate.

2 thoughts on “Kathy Shorr’s SHOT: 101 Survivors of Gun Violence in America”

  1. These fine high-quality, high-resolution photos took a long time to load on my desktop – creaky ADSL connection, fibre "coming soon". This may be a more serious issue for readers using mobile devices. I'm not sure what the solution is, when the photo is the heart of the story not a decoration, but maybe add thumbnails that will load fast.

    Photos of gunshot victims who did not survive would not be publishable without warning. Hollywood has a lot to answer for. In old Westerns, the hero or his sidekick is often shot in the shoulder or arm, winces, slaps on a bandage or sling, and carries on fighting the baddies. In reality, I suppose the impact of a non-fatal .45 bullet is immediate massive shock, shattered bones and muscles and lifelong disability.

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