A Rishton woman survived being left for dead by gunman Derrick Bird during his murderous rampage in Cumbria last week.
Friends said Bird drove past Fiona Moretta, 52, before stopping and reversing. After telling the mum-of-two he was going to kill himself, Bird shot her in the face, leaving her with a broken jaw and shrapnel lodged in her throat.
The cabbie left Ms Moretta, a steward at Rishton Methodist Church, lying on the floor.
Amazingly she managed to get help by hailing passing motorists, including an off-duty intensive care nurse.
She was initially in a critical condition but after undergoing a tracheotomy operation to free her airway is now said to be recovering.
Bird’s senseless rampage in west Cumbria left 12 dead and 11 critically injured, before he turned the gun on himself.
Ms Moretta was on a week-long break with friends and out for a walk from her accommodation in Boot to Eskdale Green.
Colin Cooper, a church friend, said: "Obviously we are very concerned and our thoughts are with her for her recovery."
"She is a very friendly person and has been very active in the church. She is not the sort of person to just sit back. She is very positive and a good member of our church.
Friend Pam Marsden, a tai chi tutor, said they were hoping for a relaxing break in the Lake District.
She said:¿"For this to happen to Fiona was horrendous but she is doing so well. She was very lucky when you think about it."
Pam said they managed to find a detective who was able to make checks and find out she had been shot.
Bird’s murder spree caused universal disbelief in the area, where he was widely known, and stunned the country.
Among his victims were his own twin brother, David, and others known to him, such as the family solicitor and a colleague. He went on to kill and maim again and again, apparently at random, before taking his own life.