Who is Abby Zwerner? First-grade teacher who was shot by one of her six-year-old students

Abby Zwerner
Abby Zwerner

In the afternoon of Friday 6th January 2022, a sixth grade student at Richneck Elementary School in Newport News shot a teacher named Abby Zwerner.

Police said the boy, who has not been publicly identified, got into an ‘altercation’ with Abby Zwerner, of Williamsburg, before shooting her.

She was transported to the hospital for surgery after suffering “life-threatening” injuries, Police Chief Steve Drew told reporters during an evening press conference.

Abby Zwerner,  was taken to Riverside Regional Medical Center in critical condition and remains there.

She was the only one injured.

What we know about Abby Zwerner

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Currently, Abby Zwerner is 25 years old, which means she was born in 1998

 Abby Zwerner’s Facebook page indicates that she “works at Newport News Public Schools” and “studied Elementary Education at James Madison University.”

It is also stated on her page that she graduated from college in 2020.

On her Facebook page, she mentions that she attended West Point High School, lives in Williamsburg, and is originally from Ruckersville.

At JMU, Zwerner was in the Delta Gamma sorority, according to a Facebook post. She wrote:

I grew up outside of Charlottesville, so my family and I would always go on hikes at Shenandoah and play outdoors with a nice view of the mountains from our house. I’ve always loved nature and the calm and peaceful feeling it brings us. It’s a great way to self-reflect, de-stress, and be content with whatever is going on in your life at the moment.

According to his obituary in, Zwerner’s father, John Zwerner, “was a Newport News firefighter and paramedic serving on the HAZMAT Team” when he died unexpectedly at age 56 at his home in 2020.

He was survived by his wife, Julie, Abby and her two siblings, the obituary says. “John was a devoted husband and father who always put his family’s needs before his own,” it reads.

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