I-96 murder-suicide survivor doing ‘shockingly’ well

amedy dewey
An undated courtesy photo of Amedy Dewey, posted to her Caring Bridge page.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Despite a traumatic wound to her head, the 18-year-old who police say was shot by her stepfather along I-96 in Ionia County is doing remarkably well, loved ones say.

Amedy Dewey was the lone survivor in an apparent murder-suicide shooting Saturday night near the Nash Highway exit in Boston Township Saturday night.

Investigators believe 50-year-old David Somers shot Dewey and his wife, 50-year-old Lisa Somers, before turning the gun on himself. Both David and Lisa died at the scene. Dewey was rushed to a Grand Rapids hospital with critical injuries.

Photo: Lisa and David Somers (Photo courtesy: Shelbi Somers)

Ionia County investigators haven’t disclosed any possible motive behind the shootings, but details about what was happening in David Somers’ life have surfaced since the incident. Relatives say he was being treated for a brain tumor and multiple sources confirmed he was being investigated by police for a relationship with an underage girl.

On Wednesday, Dewey’s family said they were encouraged by the developments they’ve seen in her recovery since the shooting happened.

“Amedy is communicating very well today,” Morgan Lifer, Dewey’s cousin, told 24 Hour News 8. “Even the doctors are continuously offering more words of encouragement…They’re very impressed — very shocked.”

Lifer said Dewey is on a ventilator and feeding tube, and doctors have kept her sedated. Dewey’s medical team has discouraged her from trying to speak, but she has communicated with her family in writing.

“Yesterday she was like, ‘He shot us,'” Lifer said. “She’s very responsive. She’s moving all of her limbs.”

Ionia County I-96 Murder-Suicide
Photo: Deputies investigate a murder-suicide on I-96 in Boston Township. (Jan. 7, 2017/Courtesy: Ionia County Sheriff’s Office)

Doctors say Dewey’s brain wasn’t injured in the shooting and that the most lasting impact physically will likely be the damage to her face.

“She’s going to have multiple more (sic) surgeries,” Lifer said, citing information from doctors. “There’s (sic) going to be no problems other than a lot of reconstructive face surgeries to come.”

Family members say doctors advised them to avoid discussion about Saturday’s incident with Dewey so as not to stress her as she recovers. She is aware that her mother and stepfather both died, and at times she has expressed her sadness.

“She cried when her boyfriend got there the other day,” Lifer said.

Memorial services for Lisa Somers will be held this weekend.

A visitation is scheduled for Friday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Oak Grove Funeral Home and Cremation Center in Ludington. Family members are asking that visitation attendees wear Detroit Tigers and Detroit Lions apparel, as Lisa was an avid fan of both teams.

Her funeral service will take place at 11 a.m. Saturday at Oak Grove Funeral Home and Cremation Center.

David Somers’ side of the family said a service for him will be held Monday, but arrangements are still being finalized.

Relatives have created a webpage to update the public on Dewey’s condition. They’ve also set up accounts to support Dewey and her family through GoFundMe and Safe Harbor Credit Union. Donations can be made to the Amedy Dewey Donation Fund at credit unions throughout the area, the family says.

Lifer says the family needs the support as they deal with what they lost and celebrate who they didn’t.

“She must have had a guardian angel or been sitting in just the right position for [the bullet] to miss all of those vital organs,” Lifer said. “Amedy’s here. She’s fighting. She’s doing good — shockingly — like, blowing doctors’ minds.”