The Kristene Chapa Story

Announcing

Because There Were No Birds:
The Kristene Chapa Story
by

Kristene Chapa & Chivas Sandage

On June 22, 2012, a lesbian teenage couple was assaulted and then shot execution-style by a gunman at close range in a south Texas park near midnight. Nine hours later, birders found Mollie Judith Olgin, 19, and Mary “Kristene” Chapa, 18, in knee-deep grass just below a scenic overlook on a windy coastal bluff that slopes into the Corpus Christi Bay. Both girls had been shot in the head.

Mollie was pronounced dead at the scene. However, Kristene was taken to a local hospital where she regained consciousness to find she had paralysis on the left side yet remembered what had happened—and the gunman’s face. As she gained strength, she began to sign with her right hand, at first her only way to communicate. She spent the next three and a half months living in rehabilitation centers where she proved her doctors wrong while helping the police create a composite sketch of the gunman. As months passed, her sense of humor, refusal to pity herself, and stubborn courage inspired many across the nation. She posted “I Take Bullets” as her tagline on Twitter, threw herself into a swimming pool to keep her therapists on their toes, and as a valued pitcher on her high school softball team, threw the first pitch of her team’s next season.

On June 20, 2014, the alleged gunman and his wife were arrested two days before the second anniversary of the shooting which occurred during the state’s gay pride weekend.

Because There Were No Birds is the remarkable story of how this American teenager continues to reclaim her body and her life—and where she finds her courage. Among the growing number of tragedies caused by gun violence, too rare are the voices of victims who survive—especially young women like Kristene Chapa who thrive despite all odds.

For recent coverage by GLAAD (Gay Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation): click here

To donate to Kristene Chapa’s medical fund: click here

 

IMG_8639_photo by V. Felten

Kristene Chapa at Violet Andrews Park two years after the shooting (photo by V. Felten)

 

IMG_8658_photo by V. Felten

The overlook at Violet Andrews Park, May 16, 2014 (photo by V. Felten)

 

IMG_8602_photo by V. Felten

 

 

 

© Chivas Sandage and Kristene Chapa 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chivas Sandage and Kristene Chapa with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

12 Thoughts on “The Kristene Chapa Story

  1. Hollie Johnson on June 21, 2014 at 2:36 pm said:

    Kristene has been an inspiration to all of us. I don’t know her personally but we have a friend in common. I have prayed Kristene and the friend that we have in common since it has happened. I have watched her grow into a young lady against all odds.

  2. Cheryl Pleasant on June 21, 2014 at 7:30 pm said:

    Kristene is my neighbor. Just from the little i know about her i can tell she has a great love for her family. I am greatful God that she is doing as well as she is .She is such an inspiration. Reminds me that no matter whatever hardships you face if you remain strong and hold to Gods unchanging hand. He’s just around the corner to turn the situation around and prove he was there every step of the way.

  3. David Mauldin on June 21, 2014 at 8:34 pm said:

    thank you for your courage

  4. Anonymous on June 21, 2014 at 8:54 pm said:

    Words can’t begin to describe the hell these 2 girls went through. I along with thousands in the community are SO very happy that suspects have been arrested in this case. Prayer for you Kristen & for Mollie that her soul rests in peace.

  5. margo mccall on June 21, 2014 at 9:01 pm said:

    Such a strong and amazing your lady to overcome such a tragic thing in life. I believe in her strength for herself and others. Prayers are always going for her and Mollie family

  6. tiffany flores on June 21, 2014 at 9:33 pm said:

    Amazing. .. your everything keep moving forward not letting anything stop you…

  7. Marisa - CC TX on June 21, 2014 at 10:01 pm said:

    There is soo much evil in this world. What happened is beyond tragic. If I didnt believe in miracles before you are a true testament of one. Keep fighting. Keep living. That is what you are showing soo many of us.

  8. Anonymous on June 22, 2014 at 12:24 am said:

    So much hate in the world I this is tragic and I pray for both families and hope she keeps on with her recovery she’s an inspiration and should be so very proud of herself

  9. Vicki on June 22, 2014 at 9:14 am said:

    Kristene you are awesome and courageous…keep up the good work!

  10. Anonymous on June 22, 2014 at 9:14 pm said:

    You are an inspiration to girls with female partners. May Molly RIP and may you continue to be a super courageous young lady that you have proven to be. God works miracles and may this person that caused you’ll harm pay for what he did.♡♡

  11. Anonymous on June 22, 2014 at 11:01 pm said:

    Thank you for sharing this story. Im going to share this with my daughter in law and in return she will share it with her friends

  12. Susie Gomez on June 23, 2014 at 2:33 pm said:

    You are an inspiration to be able to hold your head up high and able to live with such a positive mind. I know god is with you 24/7 and gives you strength each day to overcome this horrible tragedy. Rest assure that Molly is watching over you also and that justice will be served to this sick minded s.o.b. May the soul of Molly forever rest in peace .. You are a courageous young lady and never fear God and Molly are always with you. God bless you and your family and to the family of Molly…I will forever pray daily that this ahole will pay and suffer. daily.

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