Since surviving an execution-style shooting in a Texas park two years ago, Kristene Chapa has dedicated herself to healing physically and emotionally, from the attack's severe physical wounds and the emotional loss of her girlfriend, Mollie Olgin, who died at the scene.
Last night, MSNBC premiered an online original segment to catch up with Kristene, her advocates, and community members—known to her friends as Kris—about her intensive physical therapies, the aftermath of the brutal attack, coming out to her family, the ways in which Kris continues to inspire her community and young LGBT people throughout Texas and beyond.
"God loves everybody, no matter if you're gay or straight. He left me here for a reason. I have a second chance," said Kristene. "What happened to Mollie and I, I still am going through in many different phases, but I'm just grateful I'm still here. I'm going through all the struggles and obstacles, but I'm still up. I fall down, I pick myself back up."
David Strickland, the man accused of sexually and physically assaulting Kristene and Mollie, will face trial in spring of 2015, though he is not being charged for committing a hate crime, much to the dismay of many who have been following Kristene's story.
"The police do not believe they have evidence of a hate crime at this point in time. As Kristene's co-author, here's what I can tell you: The attack had the earmarks of being targeted," explained Chivas Sandage, writer and advocate, to MSNBC. "From everything I'm seeing, I believe this could be a very real possibility."
Watch and share the segment below:
GLAAD continues to work closely with Kristene and Chivas to bring the nation's attention to Kris' story, such as with this MSNBC segment.