Author J.K. Rowling at a fundraising evening in London on Nov. 9, 2013.
Olivia Harris/Reuters

J.K. Rowling sends ‘Dumbledore’ letter to shooting survivor


The wise Professor Albus Dumbledore isn’t just for wizards anymore. Include muggles on his list of individuals to protect.

J.K. Rowling, the famed British author of the “Harry Potter” literature series, hand-wrote a letter in the mindset of the fictional headmaster and sent it to Texas mass shooting victim Cassidy Stay. The grieving 15-year-old was the lone survivor after a gunman opened fire last month at her home in a suburb of Houston, killing both of her parents and four siblings.

The suspected shooter also targeted Stay, who was in critical condition after the massacre on July 9. Law enforcement officials credited the girl with saving other individuals’ lives because she “played dead” and notified police after suffering from a bullet wound in her finger.

Days later, the recovered teenager attended a public memorial for her family, and quoted Dumbledore: “Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light,” she said, borrowing a line from “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.” Dumbledore is the leader of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, the educational establishment Potter attends throughout the series’ seven books.

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A Facebook campaign, which currently boasts more than 7,000 supporters, was created after Stay’s speech to encourage Rowling to visit the young girl. Instead, the author wrote a letter — in purple ink — from the perspective of the magical Dumbledore.

“J.K. Rowling sent a letter and package to Cassidy Stay, but it was a private letter so we are not disclosing any further details of its contents or how it came about,” Rowling’s public relations team said in an email sent to msnbc on Thursday.

The box contained a wand, an acceptance letter to Hogwarts, a school-supply list, and an autographed book, according to a Facebook post by the group “We want J.K. Rowling to meet Cassidy Stay.”

Other individuals have demonstrated their support. By Thursday, more than $400,000 had been raised for a trust fund in Stay’s name.

Gun Policy, Gun Violence and Texas

J.K. Rowling sends 'Dumbledore' letter to shooting survivor