11-year-old said she survived Uvalde shooting by smearing herself in friend’s blood, playing dead

Miah Cerrillo said she used her dead teacher’s phone to call 911

11-year-old Miah Cerrillo spoke with CNN producer Nora Neus and said a gunman shot her teachers and friends inside a classroom at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas. (CNN Newsource)

UVALDE, Texas – An 11-year-old student at Robb Elementary School said she smeared herself in her friend’s blood and played dead in an effort to survive Tuesday’s shooting.

Miah Cerrillo told CNN that she and her classmates were watching Disney’s “Lilo and Stitch” when her teachers Eva Mireles and Irma Garcia got word that a gunman was inside the school.

Miah said one of the teachers went to lock the door but the gunman was already standing there and shot the window of the door before entering.

She said the shooter told the teacher “goodnight” before killing her and then opening fire on the rest of the classroom, according to CNN.

Miah described bullets whizzing by her before the gunman went into an adjoining classroom and opened fire once more.

She told CNN that the gunman started playing sad music and that’s when she and a friend grabbed her teacher’s phone and called 911, asking the dispatcher to “please send help.”

Miah’s aunt, Blanca Rivera, told KSAT sister station KPRC that Miah was forced to go into survival mode.

“My sister-in-law said is that [Miah] saw her friend full of blood, and she got blood and put it on herself,” Rivera told KPRC.

“She dipped her hands in the blood of a classmate -- who lay next to her, already dead — and then smeared the blood all over herself to play dead,” CNN reported.

Miah told CNN it felt like she was laying there for three hours.

“She said afterwards, she overheard talk of police waiting outside the school. As she recounted this part of the story during the interview, she started crying, saying she just didn’t understand why they didn’t come inside and rescue them,” CNN reported.

Miah told the news outlet that she was too scared to speak on camera, and only wanted to speak to a woman, but that she wanted to share her story “so people can know what it’s like to live through a school shooting.”

Miah was treated for fragment wounds following the massacre.

If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental crisis or is in need of emotional help, here are some resources from University Health that may offer help:


About the Author:

Mary Claire Patton has been a journalist with KSAT 12 since 2015. She has reported on several high-profile stories during her career at KSAT and specializes in trending news and things to do around Texas and San Antonio.