"Laying on that ground, bleeding out. So many people around holding my chest. People I didn't know. I come from Kansas City so death is kind of hard out here, so I thought I was dying. I didn’t think of myself as surviving." - Wesley Hamilton
One hundred and twenty-six. That’s the number of people killed in Kansas City in 2016. Four earlier in 2012, that number wasn’t much different. There were one hundred and eight homicides. In the beginning of that year, Wesley Hamilton was in danger of becoming lost in that massive statistic after he was unexpectedly shot outside his former girlfriend's apartment.
"I had so many whys going through my head. I’m like why me? I just got my daughter, how is she gonna grow up? All these thoughts are going through my head. At that point I was like, I’m dead. It’s about to happen. Where am I going?" Hamilton says.
In that moment, Hamilton didn’t know he would someday consider those gunshots to be one of the best things that ever happened to him, or that he would be forgiving the shooter.
"Because if it wasn’t for him I wouldn’t be who I am today. Regardless if he took my life he gave me life."