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'I still can't cope': 20-year-old shot 11 times in Milwaukee looks back at her trials, tribulations

Deanna Isom was shot 11 times while sitting in a car with her best friend on Milwaukee's north side. She survived, but her friend did not.
Posted at 6:30 PM, Aug 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-05 22:49:13-04

MILWAUKEE — One year ago, Deanna Isom was shot 11 times while sitting in a car with her best friend on Milwaukee's north side. She survived, but her friend did not.

Isom has gone through many battles in the past year.

"I still can't cope with being paralyzed," Isom said.

Even though she's a paraplegic, she's not letting that stop her from reaching her dreams.

She's enrolled in college at Colorado State University and is studying accounting. She has taken the worst day in her life and is creating scrubs for nurses taking care of gun violence survivors like herself.

When she looks back at how far she's come, she can't help but remember her best friend isn't by her side anymore.

"I wish he was still here," Isom said.

TMJ4's Ubah Ali asked Isom what closures looks like for her. She simply replied, "The cops calling me telling me they have the guy(s) that killed your best friend and shot you arrested."

While so much has changed since that August night, Isom said this year is dedicated to regaining her mobility with the hopes of one day walking again.

"I start physical therapy at the end of this month and occupational therapy in September," Isom smiled.

Latasha James first spoke to TMJ4's Ubah Ali outside of Children's Wisconsin as she pleaded for answers.

One year later and the family still has no idea who left Isom paralyzed and killed her best friend.

"That night, it shouldn't have happened," James said.

James said it breaks her heart to see the violence only continue in Milwaukee.

"The cycle is repeating itself with all the violence right now," James stated.

According to the Milwaukee Police Department, just this year, 31 women were victims of gun violence. That is up from 18 this time last year.

Isom said she's not mad at the people or person who shot her and killed her best friend, she's choosing to forgive but hopes justice is served one day.

"Being so close to death, life is too short to be mad," Isom stated. "I'm not even mad at whoever did this."

While life is different, the one constant thing in her life has been her family.

"I got a lot of love, and it beats the depression," Isom smiled.

Milwaukee police say they are still looking for unknown suspects.

If you would like to help Isom, you can donate here.

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