The mother of an Aurora cinema massacre victim has revealed the last text her daughter sent her before the shooting, the Huffington Post reports.
Sandy Phillips, the mother of 24-year-old shooting victim Jessica Ghawi, has shared the very last text message that she ever received from her daughter.
A few minutes past midnight on July 20, 2012, Phillips got out of bed to text her daughter, who had been hanging out with her friend Brent that evening. Although it was late, she wanted to see whether the two were still awake.
Ghawi reportedly sent a text back to Phillips saying that she and Brent were at the movies. "Get some sleep mom," the text said. "I'm really excited for you to come visit. Need my mama."
The text was sent at 12:04 a.m. About half an hour later, a gunman entered the Colorado movie theater where the two friends were watching "The Dark Knight Rises" and opened fire on the cinemagoers.
Ghawi was reportedly killed after being shot in the head and leg.
When Phillips's phone rang again, Brent was on the other end of the line, instead of her daughter.
"There was screaming in the background. I knew whatever was going on, that it was bad," Phillips said. "Brent said, 'There's been a shooting.'"
When Phillips asked about her daughter, Brent gave her the devastating news.
"He said, 'I tried,'" Phillips recalled. "I said, 'Oh, God, Brent, tell me she's not dead.' He couldn't tell me that."
Ghawi, an aspiring sports broadcaster, had had a close brush with violence just one month prior to the Aurora shooting.
While visiting a mall in Toronto in June 2012, Ghawi got a burger from the mall's food court. Instead of sitting down to eat it, however, she decided to step outside for some fresh air. About three minutes later, shots were fired in the food court area that Ghawi had just left. Two people died and five more were injured in the shooting that day.
Phillips comforted her daughter after the frightening incident, which Ghawi described in detail in an online blog.
"I said, 'You know what, Jessi? You have seen the worst of humanity today, and you're never going to see anything like that again,'" Phillips said.
Tragically, her words of comfort were proven wrong as Ghawi fell victim to another deranged gunman in the Aurora shooting a month later.
Phillips said that losing her daughter has "changed everything" for her and Jessica's father, Lonnie.
"There is nothing that is the same about us—how we think, what we do, what we believe," Phillips said.
Earlier this year, Ghawi's parents lost a civil lawsuit against four websites that allegedly sold ammunition to James Holmes, the perpetrator of the Aurora massacre, without a background check, Reuters reported in April.
The couple was ordered to pay about $220,000 in court costs for the defendants in the case.