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How the 8-year-old who hid in a cooler during Tops mass shooting is doing one month later

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Posted at 7:54 PM, Jun 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-15 06:37:20-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — One month after the mass shooting at Tops on Jefferson Avenue, 8-year-old Londin Thomas is happily enjoying the outdoors. Thomas was inside the store with her parents when the shooting occurred. She hid in a cooler with her dad until police arrived.
"I play on with my hula hoop and on my bike, and the fire pit. We do marshmallows," Thomas said.

Londin's mom, Julie Harwell, said Londin has been doing well since the shooting.

"She's been brave and strong. She's been talking her feelings out to me," Harwell said.

Harwell said in turn, Londin has helped her heal.

"Throughout the whole thing, she's been my motivation to not be so sad or to try to go throughout the day like normal," Harwell said.

Londin and Harwell have been seeing counselors to help them deal with what they experienced inside Tops May 14th.

"She hasn't changed much, but in the long run she might. I have to have those long term counselors that she knows and is going to know along the way so she won't be afraid to talk to me or who she's been talking to for a long time," Harwell said.

Londin said she goes to the store with her counselor and gets water and snacks.

Meanwhile, Harwell has started giving back to the community she said has helped her so much.

"I've been volunteering more, trying to give back more. I've become members of different organizations that help people like Peacemakers and Healing Hearts," Harwell said.

Throughout the past month, one thought has remained in the forefront of their family's minds.

"I have to appreciate every moment with my family and everybody that I do love dearly because every day is not promised," Harwell said.