LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) – A UNLV student’s search to find the stranger who pushed her wheelchair and got her to safety during the shooting on campus has reached a happy ending.
Natalie Matarazzo posted on social media and spoke to FOX5 in hopes of finding that hero.
“I really don’t know if I would’ve made it off campus in its entirety if it wasn’t for her,” she said. “I just want to say ‘Thank you,’ and I just want to make sure that I know her name.”
Her name is TxiTxiMee Lee, and Matarazzo got the chance to thank her personally thanks to FOX5′s story.
“I was eating food here. I was right at the hightop tables,” recalled Lee, walking around campus weeks after the shooting.
On the morning of December 6, Lee had just finished her first class of the day at UNLV and was eating at the Student Union, when she heard shots fired, followed by commotion and someone yelling that there was an active shooter.
That’s when she started running and saw Matarazzo in her wheelchair.
“I saw her right here, and she just slowly kept inching forward, and she kept looking backwards,” said Lee. “So I just kind of walked up to her and I was like, ‘Hey, do you want me to push you?’ And she was like, ‘Yes, please. I’m scared. I don’t know what’s going on.’”
“I was really scared that I was going to be left behind or I was going to be trampled or people were not going to notice me or pay attention to me,” Matarazzo said in a social media video she posted while searching for the person who helped her.
Lee said she pushed the wheelchair as fast as she could, running and dodging traffic, all the way to Matarazzo’s apartment a mile from campus.
”I was like, ‘Just move your hands, don’t worry about it, call your mom, call your family, let them know that you’re safe, and I got you,’” said Lee.
After dropping Matarazzo off, Lee went straight to work.
She said she didn’t think much of the interaction until she was on her flight home to Wisconsin and got this message from her coworker, who saw the story on FOX5: “Hey, Txi Txi Mee! They’re looking for you on FOX5. It’s an honor to work with our very own hero. The young lady you helped get off campus during the UNLV shooting is looking for you to thank you.”
Lee and Matarazzo were able to connect over the phone.
Matarazzo shared her gratitude for Lee‘s selfless acts that day, and they plan to meet in person after winter break when they’re both back in town.
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