Less than two months after they were wounded in the shooting at Noblesville West Middle School, Ella Whistler and Jason Seaman took center stage at the Noblesville Fourth of July Parade.
Whistler and Seaman served as the parade Grand Marshals.
Community members lined the parade route and gave the two a standing ovation.
It was 13-year-old Whistler’s first public appearance. She wore a neck brace and waved to the crowd. She was shot seven times when a male student entered the science classroom at Noblesville West Middle School and began shooting.
Seaman was shot as he tackled the shooter.
Noblesville High School senior and football player Dalton Davis says he was proud to be there to support Seaman.
“It was a terrible situation, but he turned it into something that is obviously better,” Davis says. “So, he gives the community someone to cheer for and he’s kind of a symbol of the Miller Nation.”
The event drew a number of local and state officials, including Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.).
“They’re heroes,” Donnelly says. “They are emblematic of Noblesville, of Noblesville Strong, of Noblesville Proud, of what a wonderful town this is.”
The teen charged in the May 25 shooting is scheduled to appear in court in September. Indiana Public Media is not naming him because he’s a juvenile.