A punk band superfan went to almost every show for 10 years. Now she’s paralyzed after the singer jumped on her

Bird Piche, 24, remains in hospital, but her condition is ‘trending in the right direction’ following the incident in Buffalo, New York, on April 30

Mike Bedigan
Monday 13 May 2024 19:52
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A punk rock band superfan who had been to see almost every show for 10 years is now in a “difficult situation,” after being left partially paralyzed when the lead-singer dove off the stage and landed on her.

Bird Piche remains in hospital, but her condition is “trending in the right direction,” friends said. The 24-year-old was left with “severe spinal cord injuries” and underwent extensive surgery following the incident on April 30 at Australian band Trophy Eyes’ gig at the Mohawk Place venue in Buffalo, New York.

In a statement shared with WKBW, a general manager of Mohawk Place said crowd-surfing was forbidden at the venue and that signs were posted “everywhere.” The band and their promoters had been reminded of the rule prior to the gig, the manager said.


Family friend Leo Wolters Tejera, who was at the concert, told The Independent that Trophy Eyes fans had increasing concerns with safety at concerts.

“[Bird] has been a fan for like, I think over a decade. She said she’s basically been to every show within a six-hour radius for the past like 10 years of her life,” Mx Tejera, who identifies using they/ them pronouns.

Bird Piche suffered ‘severe spinal cord injuries’ and underwent extensive surgery following the incident on 30 April at a gig at the Mohawk Place venue in Buffalo, New York (WGRZ-TV)

“So I think it’s gonna be a difficult situation now with a lot of ebbs and flows. What she feels right now she might not feel later, and I think that’s just how processing goes.

“When your life changes majorly. Like, in one moment, you could be super grateful that you know, the band donated some money… and then the next second, you could be frustrated, because, like, Trophy Eyes has had sort of bad feedback from concert goers before.”

They added: “People that have been going to the shows, that followed that on the tour, had been saying [lead singer John Floreani] seemed really out of it.

“He's been really careful to stop the show, if like he sees someone if he thinks he sees someone struggling, but there's sort of like this history of it.”

A GoFundMe page set up by friends and family of Ms Piche has raised over $66,000. Trophy Eyes previously made a $5,000 contribution to the campaign.

Footage on social media showed the band performing at the intimate venue. Ms Piche’s distinctive pink hair could be seen in the center of the room before Mr Floreani lept into the crowd and seemingly on top of her.

Mr Floreani’s height is listed online as 6-feet 6-inches, whereas Ms Piche was “tall and skinny” – around 5-feet 6-inches tall – with a runner’s physique, Mx Tejera said. The singer was “definitely not someone they’re gonna match up in a wrestling match,” they said.

A statement from Trophy Eyes, shared on the band’s social media page, said that they were “truly heartbroken” by the incident at the Mohawk Place, which had “shaken us all to our core”. Mr Floreani accompanied Ms Piche in the ambulance to the hospital following the incident.

“Out of respect for the family, we have refrained from speaking about this publicly so far, but with the blessing of their family we are now able to say how truly heartbroken we are to be here now,” their statement read.

“Our friend, Bird, is now in recovery, but still has a long road ahead for them. This situation has shaken us all to our core, and we ask for patience while we look to help Bird navigate this difficult time.

Ms Piche is still in the hospital, though her condition is ‘trending in the right direction,’ family friends said (WGRZ-TV)

“Please, keep Bird in your thoughts. We remain in close contact with them and will expand on this as new news arrives.”

Two weeks later, Mx Tejera told The Independent that although there was “no miracle breakthrough” in Ms Piche’s condition, things were “trending in the right direction” and that she was able to talk, have visitors and communicate via text.

“She [is] really just expressing a lot of gratitude for the people that have kind of come together to rally around her and take care of things in this moment,” they said, adding that she was taking her recovery day-by-day.

“If anybody’s going to have the tenacity to get through it. I definitely would see that being Bird,” Mx Tejera added.

A spokesperson for Trophy Eyes told The Independent that the band currently had no further public comment on the matter.

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