Moananu Mafua Romeo of Salelologa is grateful to be alive.
A teacher by profession, Moananu is counting his lucky stars after he was shot at early on Sunday morning.
He was caught in the crossfire when young men from Salelologa set up rocks to block the road.
“I am fortunate to be alive and for that I am thankful to God for giving me another chance at life,” he said.
According to Moananu, during the wee hours of Sunday when gun shots were heard, that’s when men between Salelavau and Salelologa started throwing rocks at each other.
“I heard the gun shots, then I walked over,” he said. “At that time, rocks were flying back and forth and there were a lot of men on both sides of the road."
“Next thing, a gun was discharged and I was injured."
“I fell to my knees and I felt like someone just slapped me, telling me I was just being shot."
“I was able to get back up and felt pain on the back part of my body, from my back all the way down."
“Luckily the gun was discharged from afar, and the pallets from the ammo were splattered onto my back and legs."
“I was able to get up and while limping to my house, which was not far, I saw our Church Minister walking towards the young men and I had to warn him."
“I limped over to him and then managed to get back to my house."
“I was treated at home and then when everything was calm, my wife then took me to the hospital in Tuvasivi, hours after I was shot,” said Moananu.
He told the Samoa Observer the experience of being shot at is something he never wishes on anyone.
“I am grateful to be alive,” Moananu reiterated.
“After the incident, it feels like an eye opener for me. I feel as if I have been given another chance.”
Moananu has already moved on from the ordeal.
“I have already forgiven those who shot me and not because of them, I did it for me.”
The Samoa Observer visited his residence a couple of hours after he was discharged from the hospital after being admitted for two days.
“I have confidence in the Matai system that Savaii has and that is why I know this will not happen again and because of that I have moved on with my life."
“I will not dwell in the past and I have forgiven those who did this to me and overall I am thankful that I am able to spend more time with my son and wife,” said Moananu.