The Westerly Sun

WESTERLY — When Police Chief Shawn Lacey spoke this week with the family of Robin Moss, who was seriously injured in the Babcock Village shooting, he learned that she was not only expected to survive, but could potentially make a full recovery.

Moss, 38, assistant manager of the apartment building, was one of three women who were shot by a resident, Joseph Giachello, on the morning of Dec. 19. Office manager Julie Cardinal was killed, and a 66-year-old resident, Donna Thornley, was wounded. Moss, who was taken to Yale New Haven Hospital, was still listed in critical condition but was breathing on her own, Lacey said. 

“We didn’t think this was possible. It is incredible how well she is doing,” Lacey said on Thursday. “She was shot three times and had significant wounds. When she was taken from the scene, we were left with the understanding that the damage was so significant that we believed she was already dead. She was never supposed to make it to New Haven ... now it seems she could fully recover.”

Lacey spoke with the family on Tuesday and on Christmas Day. According to an update shared on Facebook by family friend Jordan Boyce and confirmed through the police, Moss has undergone about 10 surgeries since she was taken to the hospital. The surgeries were reported to be successful in addressing 97% of the damage, and the remaining injuries were expected to heal naturally.

On Christmas, Lacey said, the family told him her breathing tube had been removed and she was able to breathe fully on her own for the first time since being admitted to the hospital.

The community has stood behind the victims of the shooting since the shooting, which occurred at the complex at 122 Cross St. in Westerly. The police said that Giachello, 66, shot 47-year-old Cardinal once and that she died almost instantly. Thornley was also shot once and her injury was considered serious but not life threatening. Giachello went to his apartment and killed himself with the same .38-caliber revolver he had purchased two days earlier. 

Over the past several days, many people have joined the effort to help Moss, of Cranston, on her road to recovery. After an initial GoFundMe page for Cardinal’s family raised more than $50,000, several local residents, including Cardinal’s children, have suggested that donations should also be directed to the survivors who are trying to recover.

The response was a GoFundMe page opened on Christmas Eve by Sheri Robinson and Steve and Janet Sawyer that had already raised more than $9,200.

“Those who know Robin will tell you her smile can light up the room and she has a heart for serving others,” Steve Sawyer wrote on the page. “She is a devoted wife, loving mother and heartfelt friend. The impact of this tragedy will have significant financial impact on the family.”

The page was shared through several forums and led to numerous anonymous donations and comments of support. The goal of the fundraising campaign is to raise $30,000 to assist with recovery costs that Moss and her family will incur.

To donate to Moss’ recovery, visit shorturl.at/tzR79.

jvallee@thewesterlysun.com

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