Azana Spa survivor tells her story for the first time

CREATED May 20, 2014

  • Print
  • Play

MILWAUKEE - Three Azana employees were killed in the shooting in 2012 - Zina Daniel, Maelin Lind, and Cary Robuck. One of the four women who was shot, and survived, tells us about the terrible scene inside the spa.

Sarah Maldonado was a nail technician at Azana. The 33-year-old will never forget that Sunday morning in October when the shooter walked through the door.

"He had a gun in hand and told us all to get down on the ground," Maldonado remembers.

Sarah and the others did as they were told. But Haughton still fired.

"I actually begged for my life," Maldonado says. "I told him 'please Rad, I'm pregnant.' It didn't matter. He still shot me."

"I saw him shoot my client. I saw him shoot my friends. I saw everything."

Her best friend, Cary Robuck, died next to her. When asked how she survived, Maldonado credits her unborn baby.

"I had a towel wrapped around me and it was full of blood. I need to get out of here before my baby dies."

She was shot three times, but managed to get into another room and call 911. Both she and her baby survived.

Sarah's recovery has been extremely difficult, but she has the support of family. She's been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress and extreme depression. Sarah also has many regrets.

"I think 'Why didn't I do more?' I have survivor's guilt. How come I couldn't save my friends?"

It's the same thing survivors of Columbine are going through. She was inspired by their story on a recent Dateline episode.

"It's been 15 years and they're still struggling," she says. "They're still having a hard time every day."

Sarah wants to help the survivors of the spa shooting. She would like to start a support group and raise money for long term health care costs. Click here to see her GoFundMe site.

Sculpting Craze is donating 10% of profits through Saturday to Sarah's GoFundMe site.