After weeks of surgeries and therapy at hospitals and rehab centers in Texas, Nathaniel Tavarez, seriously wounded in a shooting at Roswell’s Berrendo Middle School on Jan. 14, headed back home to Roswell on Friday, according to 9th Judicial District Attorney Matt Chandler.
The family, he said, told him that Nathaniel was “doing really well and recovering and is looking forward to going home.”
Roswell Police said the community’s Chamber of Commerce was helping to organize a Friday afternoon welcome home gathering at the corner of Sycamore and West Second in Roswell.
Tavarez, 12, “will still have to undergo significant rehab,” Chandler said, and a major concern at the moment is his eyesight. “A week ago, he was blind in the left eye and could only see shades of dark and light in his right eye.”
Tavarez, he said, was not expected to return to school immediately.
Tavarez and Kendal Sanders, 13, were injured when 12-year-old classmate Mason Campbell walked into the student-filled school gymnasium early in the morning and opened fire with a shotgun with a sawed off stock, according to police.
Sanders was released from the hospital on Jan. 19 after two surgeries to repair damage to her shoulder. Tavarez remained in the hospital, initially in critical condition, with injuries to his eyes, chest, face and heart. For a period of time he was on a ventilator.
Campbell has been charged with three counts of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and carrying a firearm into a school.
He remains at a Roswell juvenile detention facility where he is undergoing a forensic evaluation. Chandler said he expects the evaluation to be complete by mid March.