CHICAGO (CBS) — A shooting victim is not letting paralysis from her gunshot wound stop her from enjoying a game she loves. She’s putting her energy toward helping others achieve their goals on the court.
One year ago, 19-year-old Deanna Gibson was a standout senior for the north Chicago community high school ladyhawks. Now the former high school basketball player is volunteering as an assistant coach, calling shots from her wheelchair.READ MORE: Chicago Police Restrict Time Off For Officers Amid Battle Between City Hall, FOP Over COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate
“Basketball means everything to me,” she said. “I felt like a star cause I knew I was good at it.”
Gibson said basketball consumed her life, but that changed after she was hit by a stray bullet at a party in June. Doctors told her she would never walk again.
“I am going to believe in me I am going to have faith in what I can do,” Gibson told CBS 2.
Gibson serves as a volunteer, coaching four days a week. She said coaching has helped her work through the tough times.READ MORE: Artist Nate Baranowski Uses Chalk Art To Bring Halloween Festivity To Howard Street In Rogers Park
Despite the circumstances, Gibson possesses an uncanny positive spirit. Her old coach knew the team needed Deanna’s skills as much as Deanna needed them.
“I could have lost my life but I am alive, so why not be happy and excited all the time?” Gibson said. “This gym right here and the girls — it just makes me forget about everything that happened.”
Deanna said she hopes to attend college next year and study to be an ultrasound technician. Police in Zion, where the shooting occured, have made no arrests in her case.
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