“Let me tell you something: it’s your family that this could happen to, and if you’re not protecting yourself, and protecting your loved ones … you’re not promised tomorrow.”
Taylor-Swain and others were shopping for Thanksgiving ingredients on Nov. 20 when Benjamin Charles Jones, 20, of Dayton walked into the grocery store and opened fire on people before he died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Taylor-Swain was among four people injured that night.
According to her relatives, the gunman came into her aisle, passed her and then turned to shoot at her from behind. Family members say they later were told that Taylor-Swain was hit seven times.
Terry Swain, her husband, said staff from Soin Medical Center - Kettering Health called him not long after Taylor-Swain left their Beavercreek house to let him know she was being flown out to Miami Valley Hospital for gunshot wounds.
Family flew out from across the country to show support for Taylor-Swain, who lost a kidney and part of her liver in addition to damage to her spine as a result of her wounds.
The FBI and local law enforcement agencies reported they are investigating the shooting as “at least partially” racially motivated.
Results of a search warrant filed in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court showed two Nazi flags — one red and one black — were taken from Jones’ home on Buell Lane in Dayton. Investigators also confiscated a computer, an “SS history book,” referring to the secret police of Nazi Germany, an external hard drive, two gaming consoles, and several documents and handwritten notes.
Taylor-Swain is a mother and a school counselor with the Ohio Virtual Academy. Swain described his wife as kind and also strong.
“To think that people will walk around with that much hatred for one person because of the color of their skin … there’s something seriously wrong with that process to me,” Swain said.
Taylor-Swain and another victim remain hospitalized as of Tuesday. Two other victims have been released from local hospitals. The Dayton Daily News does not typically name the victims of crime without their approval.
Noelle Swain-Fleischer, Taylor-Swain’s sister-in-law, started a GoFundMe to help cover the medical expenses related to Taylor-Swain’s recovery. As of Tuesday afternoon, it had raised more than $17,000.
Swain-Fleischer said her big brother called her the night of the shooting and she and others flew out from Buffalo, New York.
“This is something you can never prepare for in a million years,” she said. “And to have this happen to your family is just devastating.”