Sitting between his sister and mother, Devyn Holmes showed off his big smile and sense of humor.
“This tragedy has sort of, kind of, made me famous,” Devyn said. “Well to me I always thought I was famous anyway.”
That tragedy was a shooting that took place during a broadcast through Facebook Live, on April 1, 2018.
It happened while Devyn was sitting inside a parked car with another man and woman.
In the video, it is clear to see the woman held up a gun, chamber a round and fired the gun at near point-blank range
The video was watched by thousands of people, even Devyn himself.
“I was on Instagram scrolling and I found it,” Devyn said.
In an attempt to protect him, his family initially told Devyn he was in a car crash but, he later learned he was injured in a shooting.
Devyn says he cannot remember anything from the shooting and in a quest to jog his memory, he found the Facebook video and saw the moment his life changed.
“It doesn’t bother me. I’ve never been one to really be bothered by things,” Devyn said.
Now tens of thousands of people are following his recovery on the Facebook page “Do It For Devyn.”
His family uses the site to update supporters with videos of him re-learning how to do everything from talking, writing, standing and even walking. Fans have also sent him letters and even gifts from across the country.
As much as he has recovered the left side of his body he says is still weak, after the gunshot to the right side of his head.
“Little things like picking up a pencil with my left hand, it hurts me to see that I can’t even do that,” he said.
Watching her son struggle with simple tasks is hard for Sheree Holmes, who stayed by his side day and night for eight months in the hospital and physical therapy.
“It was hard to watch because I know my son can do this. Watching him have to learn it again, it’s just hard,” she told Eyewitness News.
His survival was remarkable and his recovery is defying the odds, but Devyn’s message is simple.
“Don’t play with guns. Don’t play with guns and respect everybody, love everybody because you never know what the next person’s story is. So love and respect everybody,” Devyn said.
Cassandra Damper was arrested at the scene of Devyn’s shooting. She is charged with aggravated assault causing serious bodily injury.
Her next court date is Jan. 31.
As he continues his path to recovery, Devyn hopes his next hurdle is learning to walk unassisted.