Metairie man wounded in Orlando mass shooting called a 'walking miracle'

Metairie man wounded in Orlando mass shooting may come home soon

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - David Melendez said he's filled with hope for his brother, Leo's, future.

"He is a walking miracle, so to speak. He's actually right next to me," David said.

In the Orlando hospital, David is by his brother's side and Leo is now in rehab, able to walk with assistance. He was among the victims shot during what's being called a terror attack at Pulse Nightclub on June 12.

"He was shot in the back of the head, and he was also shot in the thigh. That bullet came out through his kneecap," David said.

Leo is from Metairie but moved to Florida after Katrina.

"You know that first week, they pretty much told us they weren't sure what was going to happen or if he was going to make it or not," David said.

Leo was in a coma for two weeks and in critical condition. David said his family and friend had to take it day by day. He describes the unbelievable support from the community.

"I mean, I don't know where we'd be as far as all the assistance we've had. It's just unbelievable, the support we've gotten from Orlando and New Orleans," David said.

David said his brother is still suffering from hearing loss but doing exceptionally well.

"I believe God has a purpose for him to still be with us," David said.

He said Leo is very alert and is aware of what happened to him.

"He just remembers the guy shooting, and he felt like he was hit but he doesn't remember anything after that," David said.

The Melendez family wants the public to know they're grateful for all the support. They're asking now for prayers.

"Please continue to pray for a full recovery for my brother. I just couldn't be more thankful for the support we've gotten, even from perfect strangers," David said.

Leo is expected to return to Louisiana in September to continue his recovery.

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