- Associated Press - Friday, June 3, 2016

SAGINAW, Mich. (AP) - A teenager who nearly died after being shot in the head seven years ago has graduated from her high school in Saginaw.

Jewel Lee, 17, and her family celebrated Thursday as she took part in Arthur Hill High School’s 2016 commencement ceremony, The Saginaw News (https://bit.ly/1P9GdW8 ) reported.

“It’s a bittersweet moment,” Lee said. “When I was 10, I didn’t think about it. Now it’s like I’m proud to be doing it and it makes me cry sometimes because I could’ve not been doing it.”

In September 2009, Lee was waiting on the porch to have her hair braided for church when someone fired a gun at a nearby group of people, striking her in the head.

Lee survived the shooting and then spent years rehabilitating and working toward her goal of finishing school. She had to overcome a few obstacles, including memory issues, and had to learn how to deal with her traumatic brain injury.

“At some points, she would get so frustrated,” said her mother, LaShawn Williams. “She had been struggling toward the end of the school year.”

Lee credits her mother, some of her teachers and her principal with helping her make it to graduation.

“I was acting out in school and my mom told me to straighten up because I really could have not made it,” she said.

Lee wants to join the military, but she may have medical clearance issues, or she could pursue nursing.

“She wants to be a nurse because she remembers how the nurses cared for her,” Williams said.


Information from: The Saginaw News, https://www.mlive.com/saginaw

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