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Oakland County offering mental health support following mass shooting in Rochester Hills

Rochester Hills community comes together after mass shooting
Rochester Hills community comes together after mass shooting 04:21

ROCHESTER HILLS, Mich. (CBS DETROIT) - The community of Rochester Hills was blindsided by a senseless act of gun violence Saturday night that injured nine people, including two children.

Sadly, this isn't the first time Oakland County has reacted to this type of violence, with the Oxford High School tragedy still in recent memory.

Even though that incident helped agencies in Rochester Hills quickly jump into action, there are still mental scars that might take longer to heal than any bullet wound.

"I want to encourage anyone out there who's been traumatized by this event, affected by this event, whether you're a direct family member, a member of Rochester Hills, or you're just a member of the community, we want you to reach out for help," said Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter.

How to talk to your children about tragedies 06:45

Anyone struggling in the aftermath of Saturday's mass shooting can find help at the Rochester Hills Public Services building.

"The supports that are offered there are debriefing and facilitating connections to long-term supports and services if that's needed for people or families," said Oakland County Health Network Clinical Services Director Adam Hamilton.

With one of the nine victims as young as four years old, these services not only help parents talk to their kids about what happened but also show them how to check in to see if they're okay.

"For younger children in particular, you want to be straightforward, to the point, but you don't need to go into a lot of intensive detail though. It's really important to emphasize that we're safe now, and the people who need to step in and help are doing so," Hamilton said.

Patty Motes raised her kids in Rochester Hills for 20 years before moving to Oxford in October 2021. One month later, an active shooter killed four people as he rampaged through Oxford High School. Her connection to both tragedies compelled her to drive back to Rochester Hills to pray for those recovering.

"I pray for them; I pray for full recovery; I pray for the days to come and the months to come of what they have to remember. And I just needed to say my own prayer, and I thought this was a good place to do it," Oakland County resident Patty Motes said.

Part of this recovery also includes efforts to make sure no one has to go through something like this again.

"We've got to get a lot better at prevention because we've gotten too damn good at responding," Coulter said.

Violence like this can have a wide-reaching impact, even if you don't live in Oakland County. If you're unable to seek out support in person at the Rochester Hills Public Services building, you can still reach the Oakland County Nurse on Call by calling 800-848-5533. The line is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays.

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