Maryland school shooting victim, Jaelynn Willey, 16, taken off life support, parents say

Jaelynn Willey is pictured in this undated photo.

(With thanks to the Willey family)

A 16-year-old girl was seriously injured in a shooting at a Maryland high school earlier this week, is brain dead and will be taken off the life support, her parents announced Thursday night.

Melissa Willey told reporters that her daughter, Jaelynn, has “no life on her.”

“On Tuesday, … our life has changed completely and entirely, forever,” Melissa Willey said. “My daughter was hurt by a boy that shot her in the head and took all of our lives.”

Jaelynn Willey was shot by the 17-year-old Austin Rollins at Great Mills high School. The researchers said that Willey and Rollins had recently ended a relationship, and the shooting was not random.

Rollins was fatally shot after being confronted by an armed school resource officer, thought it is not clear whether Rollins took his own life or was killed by the officer.

Willey was shot by the 17-year-old Austin Rollins at Great Mills high School.


Willey was in critical condition at the University of Maryland, Prince George’s Hospital Center. A fundraising page to help her family raised more than $59,000.

Jaelynn was one of nine brothers and sisters, her mother said, and a member of the swim team.

Very sad news: Family of Jaelynn Willey, teen, girl shot at Great Mills High Tuesday, just announced that they will be taken off life support this evening.

— Tom Roussey (@tomrousseyABC7) March 23, 2018

A 14-year-old boy who was shot in the thigh during the encounter was released Wednesday from a hospital.

In an e-mail Thursday to The Associated Press, his mother, Kimberly Dennis, said her family is “eternally grateful” that her son, Desmond Barnes, “lives, does it well and in a good mood.”

She expressed sympathy for Willey and her family and added, “We pray also for the entire Great Mills High School, family and young people around this country. As a society, we must continue to work and fight for a world that is safe for our children.”

Great Mills high School has approximately 1600 students and is near the Patuxent River Naval Air Station, about 65 miles southeast of Washington.

St. Mary’s County Sheriff Tim Cameron credited Vice-First Class Blaine Gaskill with the prevention of more loss of life.

Cameron said Gaskill, a six-year veteran, SWAT team training, responded within a minute and shot his weapon at the same time, with a final shot was fired by Rollins. The officer was unharmed.

On Wednesday, authorities said that the Glock gun used in the shooting was legally the property of Rollins’ father. In Maryland it is illegal for any person under the age of 21 to be in possession of a gun, unless this is necessary for their work.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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