Julianna Carolla | Senior

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In the chaos that followed the slashing spree at Franklin Regional High School, Julianna Carolla didn't forget her manners.

When she saw that she'd bled onto the floor of the school cafeteria, the high school senior apologized to the cafeteria workers for making a mess.

"I don't know what was going through my head," she said. "They were so nice to me. I can't thank them enough for helping me."

Julianna Carolla

Science teacher Amy Kerschner had escorted Julianna through the cafeteria and to picnic tables outside. The cafeteria workers took care of the student, who had been stabbed in the hand during Wednesday's attack.

"They were just wonderful until help got there," said Julianna's mother, Monica Carolla.

An ambulance brought Julianna to Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC. But she was more worried about the other victims, many of whom are close friends.

"When I got to the hospital, I broke down, because nobody was telling me about anyone else," she said.

Julianna, who turns 18 on Monday, plans to attend the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing. She has wanted to be a nurse for years.

"As a kid, I was always getting hurt. I was really clumsy," she said. After her grandfather had open heart surgery, "I saw all the things the nurses were doing for him, and it just made me really interested in getting into the field."

Her experience at the hospital Wednesday only solidified her decision to become a nurse.

"I thought it was so cool seeing how everything was interacting and what was going to be my future. Everyone there was so wonderful and kind," she said. "They kept everything upbeat and positive."

At Franklin Regional, Julianna has been a member of the swim team, Caring Team for Children, National Honor Society, Science National Honor Society, French Club, Key Club and Mentor Team. She has found an especially tight-knit community in the swim team.

"I've been swimming since I was 6. I loved every moment I was on the high school swim team," she said. "They're like my family."

Julianna also volunteers for Relay for Life and at her local church, Mother of Sorrows, and works as a lifeguard. She also enjoys drawing, spending time with friends and family, going to the beach and eating at Chipotle.

"She is sweet, she is caring, she is very tough. She's been a trooper through all this," her mother said. "We've been very blessed that she has such good friends surrounding her."

Elizabeth Bloom: ebloom@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1750.

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