Survivor of Two School Shootings Finds Comfort in Horse Companion


Updated: 12:34 PM, Mon November 20, 2023

Survivor of Two School Shootings Finds Solace in Equine Companion

Kylie Ossege, a 19-year-old college student, has endured the unimaginable, surviving not one but two deadly mass school shootings in Michigan. Yet amidst the shattered remnants of her world, she has found solace and comfort in the company of Blaze, her 13-year-old American Quarter Horse.

Ossege lovingly brushes Blaze’s forehead, cherishing each moment with her equine companion. I feel very at home when I’m with him, she confides. He’s my best friend.

The significance of Blaze’s companionship cannot be underestimated. For Ossege, time has become a weighty burden, a constant reminder of the traumatic memories that refuse to fade. Fifteen minutes of terror as she lay injured in a hallway at Oxford High School, enduring pain and witnessing the loss of her classmate Hana St. Juliana. Six weeks spent in a hospital recovering from her injuries. And the haunting experience of enduring yet another school shooting at Michigan State University, a mere 14 months after the first tragedy.

On November 30, 2021, Ossege was gravely wounded during the attack on Oxford High School. As she fell to the ground, a heavy backpack weighed her down. Unable to feel her legs or move, she endured what felt like the longest 15 minutes of her life. Eventually, help arrived, and she was rushed to a nearby hospital where she spent six weeks recovering.

The emotional toll has been immense, compounded by physical pain that never seems to dissipate completely. A bullet had passed through Ossege’s clavicle and ribs, causing a spinal cord concussion that left her temporarily paralyzed. She underwent surgery and extensive physical and occupational therapy to regain her ability to walk, but the constant pain remains her unwelcome companion.

Ossege’s indomitable spirit has been both inspiring and resilient. Despite her ongoing physical challenges, she is studying kinesiology at Michigan State University, buoyed by her own caregivers’ dedication. However, even a seemingly short 10-minute walk can be excruciating for her, often requiring an Uber ride across the vast campus.

In a stroke of fortune, a family friend connected Ossege with an executive at Northwell Health in New York City, where a successful surgical fusion procedure was performed to stabilize her spine. Dr. Daniel Sciubba, one of the surgeons involved, expects Ossege’s pain levels to diminish over time, allowing her to eventually return to physical activities such as tennis and horseback riding.

Sadly, Ossege’s journey has been marred by yet another tragedy. In February, she experienced a second school shooting, this time at Michigan State University. Huddled with her suitemates in a bathroom for hours, they clung to one another until they were given the all-clear. The relentless occurrence of mass shootings across the United States has left Ossege feeling angry and sad, but she remains hopeful for change.

Taking an active role in the fight against gun violence, Ossege participates in the MSU chapter of March For Our Lives. She finds comfort and support from friends, family, and her beloved Blaze. Ossege’s mother, Marita, even left her job to care for her daughter full-time, reflecting the depth of their bond.

When she returns home from school, Ossege makes the journey to Mayfield Township to visit Blaze. Their connection runs deep, offering her respite from the burden of her traumatic experiences. As she watches him graze peacefully, she acknowledges that despite the darkness in the world, there is still light and goodness to be found.

Ossege’s courage and determination are a testament to the strength of the human spirit. As she continues to heal, both physically and emotionally, she looks forward to sharing her victim impact statement at the sentencing hearing of the shooter from Oxford High School. Ossege hopes for justice and the opportunity to have her story heard.

In the face of unimaginable tragedy, Ossege and her equine companion, Blaze, represent a beacon of resilience and hope. Their bond is a testament to the healing power of friendship and the unwavering spirit of survivors.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Related to the Above News

When did Kylie Ossege experience the two school shootings?

Kylie Ossege experienced the first school shooting at Oxford High School in Michigan in November 2021. The second school shooting occurred at Michigan State University in February (date not mentioned in the article).

How has Kylie Ossege found comfort amidst her tragedy?

Kylie Ossege finds comfort in her horse companion named Blaze. Being with Blaze makes her feel at home and provides a respite from the haunting memories and physical pain she grapples with daily.

What injuries did Kylie Ossege sustain from the first school shooting?

Kylie Ossege was severely wounded in the first school shooting, with a bullet traveling through her clavicle and ribs. She also suffered a concussion of the spinal cord that briefly paralyzed her, leading to surgery to remove a portion of her vertebral bone and relieve pressure from a spinal cord hematoma.

How is Kylie Ossege involved in advocating against gun violence?

Kylie Ossege is actively involved with the MSU chapter of March For Our Lives, where she advocates against gun violence. She also plans to deliver an in-person victim impact statement during the sentencing hearing of the shooter from the first school shooting.

How does Kylie Ossege find support and relief from her post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)?

Kylie Ossege finds support and relief from her PTSD through spending time with her horse companion, Blaze, in Mayfield Township. Grooming and being with Blaze help alleviate some of the symptoms of her PTSD.

What is Kylie Ossege studying at Michigan State University?

Kylie Ossege is studying kinesiology at Michigan State University.

What does Kylie Ossege plan to contribute to prevent future mass shootings?

Kylie Ossege remains hopeful that change can be brought about to prevent future mass shootings. She plans to make a difference in the fight against gun violence through her involvement with March For Our Lives and speaking out about her personal experiences.

How does Kylie Ossege characterize her relationship with Blaze?

Kylie Ossege describes her horse companion, Blaze, as her best friend. Being with Blaze provides her with solace and strength amidst the darkness she has faced.

Please note that the FAQs provided on this page are based on the news article published. While we strive to provide accurate and up-to-date information, it is always recommended to consult relevant authorities or professionals before making any decisions or taking action based on the FAQs or the news article.

Rohan Desai
Rohan Desai
Rohan Desai is a health-conscious author at The Reportify who keeps you informed about important topics related to health and wellness. With a focus on promoting well-being, Rohan shares valuable insights, tips, and news in the Health category. He can be reached at for any inquiries or further information.

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