Amanda Grau speaks about being held hostage inside Pulse Nightclub during the June 12 massacre

Posted at 5:52 PM, Jul 04, 2016
A Tampa nurse, who was held hostage in the bathroom during the Pulse Nightclub, is opening up for the first time about being within feet of the gunman and how she is recovering from her wounds.
Amanda Grau was shot in her torso while on the dance floor. She says the bullet traveled through her armpit. Another bullet grazed her thigh and another bullet grazed her arm.
The 33-year-old Grau remembers running into the club's bathroom to take cover.
Just seconds later, the gunman opened the bathroom door and began opening fire with an assault rifle.
"He was just in there reloading his gun," recalled Grau. "Saying look at all these bullets that I have left over and talking about him having bombs."
Grau was hit once again. She says the assault rifle blasted a hole through her thigh area.
Describing the pain as excruciating, Grau kept quiet and recalls trying to put pressure on her wounds.
"I did what I had to do to survive," Grau recalled.
Grau says she played dead while hiding behind a woman's body.
Fearing she would never see her partner or her family again, Grau did almost the unthinkable, she went against the gunman's order to not use her cell phone.
Grau recalls texting her partner and then her brother.
Her brother Philip was able to get Grau in touch with head negotiators, she says.
"He did not want us to get on the phone or if he heard us get on the phone or text or he would kill us," she recalled.
Grau says when the gunman would leave, she would text critical information to negotiators like where the gunman was at in the club and how the wounded could be rescued.
Her family believes her brave choices led to police blowing a hole into the bathroom walls to rescue the wounded.
"It's been a long road," Grau said.
Grau has undergone multiple surgeries and some of the bullet shards are still in her body and will stay there, she says.
She goes through three hours of physical therapy a day and plans on walking out of the hospital this week.
Grau believes her partner, her brother, her family and her daughter gave her the will to live.