THIENSVILLE -- The parents of a Mequon native injured in the Aurora, Colorado shooting during the midnight premiere of the Dark Knight Rises have returned to Wisconsin.
Dr. Dale Rottman is a Thiensville dentist. His son, 27-year-old Carey Rottman, is one of over 50 injured when 24-year-old James Holmes allegedly entered the crowded theater on Friday, July 20th and opened fire. Carey was shot in the leg.
Dr. Rottman said the whole experience is surreal. Dr. Rottman says what started as a nightmare turned into a positive outpouring of support for his son that culminated with a visit from "Batman" himself on Tuesday, July 24th.
Dr. Rottman says getting a phone call at 2:00 in the morning informing him his son, Carey had been shot was "a call you never want to hear."
"He was calm. He said he wanted us to be calm. It was just, 'don't worry, I'm okay,'" Dr. Rottman said.
Dr. Rottman said seeing his son in the hospital was an emotional experience, though Carey has tried to stay upbeat.
Dr. Rottman says Carey has received well-wishes on his Facebook page, and visits in the hospital from people like Colorado's governor, members of the Denver Broncos and even a visit from Batman star Christian Bale!
Dr. Rottman said Bale was serious and apologetic during his visit, but Carey tried to make the actor feel at ease.
"He came into the room and wanted to be very private. He didn't want media. Carey, being very light-hearted joked and said 'the first 30 minutes of the movie were great - hope that makes you feel better,'" Dr. Rottman said.
Doctors first envisioned Carey's recovery would take a year, but after Tuesday's surgery, doctors said Carey won't need plastic surgery. Doctors were able to close the wound with stitches -- eliminating the need for a skin graft.
Dr. Rottman said he is getting back to his practice and said though it was tough to return home and leave his son in the hospital, he knows Carey will make a speedy recovery with all the support surrounding him.
Carey Rottman could be released from the hospital as early as Thursday, July 26th -- less than a week after the shooting. He's expected to start rehabilitation on his leg, and will initially walk with crutches.
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