Fil Am Colorado Victim Rushed Back To Hospital

by Joseph G. Lariosa

CHICAGO (jGLi) – More than a week after he left the University of Colorado Hospital, Filipino American Ryan Lumba was rushed back to the hospital Sunday (Aug. 12) when “he cannot stand the pain in his stomach. He is also throwing up,” according to Rolly E. Guevarra, president of the Philippine American Society of Colorado  (PASCO).

Lumba, 17, was discharged from the hospital last Aug. 4th but Guevarra said “last night he (Ryan) was taken to the emergency at the University Hospital. He cannot stand the pain in his stomach. He is also throwing up. The doctor is checking him up and they decided to confine him for further evaluation.”

Lumba was one of the 58 injured victims in the shooting inside a movie house showing the premiere of “Dark Knight Rises” last July 20 in Aurora, Colorado. He was rushed to the hospital in critical condition. Ten other moviegoers were killed on the spot while another one died on arrival at the University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora.  Another person, the 12th fatality, died in another hospital.

Lumba’s mother, Remy Lumba, told this reporter over the phone last Friday (Aug. 10) that Ryan was hit in the stomach with one shot from a high-powered shotgun which created “18 holes that pierced his lungs and small intestine that was cut off and put back together and Ryan also sustained small pellet wounds in the skin.”

Mrs. Lumba, 55, who lost her job from a credit union company in 2009, is now taking care of Ryan and her husband, Antonio “Sam” Lumba, 62, who also lost his job after suffering a stroke while at work last December.

“Talagang hirap na hirap na rin ako ngayon sa pagsubok na ito dahil dalawa na ang inaalagaan ko sa bahay.” (I am really having a difficult time because I am taking care of two people at home.), according to Mrs. Lumba, who, like her husband, Antonio, is from Pampanga province in the Philippines.

Mrs. Lumba said Ryan recalled that when he was sitting inside the movie house and texting his friend, he saw a gunman throwing teargas canister on the floor of the movie house. He thought it was part of the promotional stunt of the movie. But afterwards, the gunman aimed and opened fired at him and other people.

When he fell, Ryan said he only heard gunfires and the screams of the victims until he passed out.

It was about 3:30 a.m. when one of Ryan’s four companions in the movie premiere called Mrs. Lumba, telling her to go to the University of Colorado Hospital, where Ryan was rushed.

She said she summoned her brother-in-law, who drove her and her husband to the hospital, where the doctor (Dr. Limberg) told her that Ryan’s stomach was opened with a 12.5-inch to 13-inch wound after sustaining 18 holes from a shotgun blast that prompted him to cut off the bad parts of his small intestine and retouch them and remove a shrapnel wound that pierced his lungs. Ryan also lost two liters of blood.

While Ryan was in the hospital, he was visited by President Barack Obama, who told Mrs. Lumba, “you had gone thru a lot, you need a hug” and the President hugged her.  She also introduced her husband to Mr. Obama but her husband was too emotional as they shook hands. She also introduced her sister-in-law, Lita Lumba, to the President.

When Ryan checked out from the hospital, he was still weak but he is being visited every day by a nurse although he is still on liquid diet.

When Ryan asked permission from his mom that he was going to watch the movie premiere, she did not object because it was not the first time that he was going to watch a midnight movie premiere.

“I just want to enjoy my summer to watch this movie premiere with my friends before I go to college,” Mrs. Lumba quoted Ryan as telling her. Ryan was supposed to start attending Western State Colorado University in Gunnison, Colorado for a psychology program beginning next month.

Ryan’s four friends, who went to the movie that night, included Devin Fuich, also 17, an African American, and his classmate and a neighbor since elementary school, and Louie Duran, a Mexican American.

It was Fuich, who survived unharmed and called Mrs. Lumba to go to the hospital where Ryan was rushed. Louie Duran was hit in the neck and hands and was also rushed to the Aurora Medical Center.

Mrs. Lumba said that now that Ryan was able to regain his speech, he told her that he would not be going out to watch movie anymore but would settle to watch DVD inside their home.

She said the shooting incident only showed that no place is safe for everybody. There was even a shooting inside a house of worship, referring to the recent shooting incident in a Sikh temple in Wisconsin.  “You can no longer tell you are at the wrong place at a wrong time.”

But she is suggesting that high-powered shotgun should not be sold to ordinary people but only to military men.

Mr. Guevarra urged donors to send their donations to the RYAN LUMBA BENEFIT FUND, Wells Fargo Bank, Account # 6635 068 924, Routing # 102 000 248 or mail their donations to Ryan Lumba Benefit Fund c/o Mrs. Remedios Lumba, 4456 S. Himalaya Court, Aurora, Colorado, 80015.

Guevarra added PASCO is building an ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) shower room for Ryan’s father in the main floor. PASCO was able to solicit materials and services from  Louie and Stephanie Anglo, who own a plumbing business in Denver, Colorado. (lariosa_jos@sbcglobal.net)

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PHOTO CAPTIONS AND CREDITS:

PRESIDENTIAL VISIT (Photo 1):
President Barack Obama is shown in these two photos visiting Filipino American Ryan Lumba inside the University of Colorado Hospital a couple of days after Ryan was rushed to the hospital following the shooting incident inside the movie house showing the premiere of the movie, “Dark Knight Rises,” that killed 12 people and injured 58 others in Aurora, Colorado. Members of the Philippine American Society of Colorado  (PASCO) have opened a fund drive to help Ryan’s parents, Remy and Antonio Lumba, both out of job while Antonio is bound to a wheelchair, cope with their activities of daily living. (jGLiPhotos courtesy of Lita Lumba)

RYAN LUMBA (Photo 2):
Photo shows Filipino American Ryan Lumba shortly after graduating from Eaglecrest High School in Aurora, Colorado this year. Ryan is one of the 58 injured victims in the shooting incident inside the movie house showing premiere of the movie, “Dark Knight Rises,” that killed 12 people and injured 58 others in Aurora, Colorado. Members of the Philippine American Society of Colorado  (PASCO) have opened a fund drive to help Ryan’s parents, Remy and Antonio Lumba, both out of job while Antonio is bound to a wheelchair, to help them cope up with their activities of daily living. (jGLiPhoto courtesy of Rolly E. Guevarra)

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