Parkland Shooting Survivor Threw Up Mid-Speech, Resumed Victorious, and J.K. Rowling Is Without Words

Here’s a speech which the headlines largely neglected yesterday, but J.K. Rowling didn’t! This morning, Rowling tweeted:

She got shot, she watched her friends die, she stood up in front of millions, threw up out of nerves, laughed about it, then finished her speech. #SamFuentes, there are no words <3


Rowling was cheering senior Sam Fuentes, a Douglas survivor who was shot in both legs, still has shrapnel lodged behind her eye, and is standing today. Fuentes read a poem about crying tears and blood while hiding behind bookcases during the shooting, and asking lawmakers not to “prioritize their guns over the lives of others.”


Midway through, she ducked and threw up; cameras cut away to the crowd; and then she laughed it off and said:

“I just threw up on international television! And it feels great!”

I am smitten.

She resumed the poem and then added that Saturday was also the birthday of victim Nick Dworet, who, she said, was shot before her eyes. She led the crowd in singing happy birthday to her classmate.

I’ve thought this about 100 times over the past 48 hours, but–this girl. So many girls and women led that day.

And all of it–the vomit, her comeback, the crowd–brought MSNBC’s Chris Matthews to tears. “You don’t fake this stuff,” he said. “This is real emotion.”


Staff reporter, Gizmodo. wkimball @ gizmodo

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I keep hearing she was ‘overwhelmed by nerves,’ etc. I think it’s more likely that she’s dealing with PTSD- puking is a common symptom especially when reliving the event. It undermines the seriousness of the situation to say she’s just got charming ‘nerves’ or ‘stage fright.’