45-year-old Elizabeth Young and her 22-year-old daughter, Tiana, would love to forget Dec. 25, 2011,
but can't. Both of them were almost killed that day at the hands of one man, Elizabeth's husband and Tiana's father.
"I was hoping that it wouldn't get to that point, but in a way I thought it would," said Elizabeth.
For 23 years, the mother of five says she was abused at the hands of her husband. On that December day, at a motel where the family was staying in Meridian, Elizabeth and her oldest daughter were shot multiple times.
"The first shot was in my lower chest," said Elizabeth. "The second one grazed me. The third one went through my back and pierced my lungs and shattered my ribs."
"I got shot in the mouth and it came out of my neck," said Tiana. "I had to have a 'trach' because I had a tracheotomy."
Just as the outside scars continue to heal, Elizabeth and Tiana say the scars on the inside are also healing. After being released from the hospital Elizabeth took her family of five to live in the Care Lodge Shelter.
"In a way I was kind of skeptical, but I knew that it would help us to get some protection," said Elizabeth.
"If they want us to, we'll take them through that whole entire process, which includes going and meeting with the judge, helping them find an attorney, going to court with them; helping them through the court process and understanding, so they don't have to do it alone," said Care Lodge Shelter Director, Joy Jones.
Striving to recover from years of abuse, Elizabeth and her children are now one of seven families enrolled in a transitional program for Care Lodge.
"I'm no longer at the shelter. I'm in my own housing," says Elizabeth. "They've (Care Lodge) helped with the financing; they helped me to overcome some of my fears by taking some of the pressure off. And now I have gone back to school. It's a great joy. It's a great joy!"
The transitional program at Care Lodge is funded by a $300,000 federal grant. The three-year grant is set to end this year; the agency is reapplying in hopes of getting it again.
As for the Young family, the gunman in their case is currently serving more than 12 years in prison for the double shooting.
In Part 3, we learn from another woman's experience how abuse can come in many forms.