Home / Trending / A year aside, some country music fans face 2 mass shootings

A year aside, some country music fans face 2 mass shootings

Ryan Pearson

Brendan Kelly speaks with journalists out of doors his house, as he presentations his Route 91 tattoo, Thursday, Nov. eight, 2018, in Thousand Oaks, Calif. Kelly, a Marine who used to be at Borderline Bar and Grill on Wednesday evening, helped other people get out after a gunman opened hearth on the status quo. Kelly additionally survived the Las Vegas Route 91 Harvest Festival capturing in 2017. (AP Photo/Ryan Pearson)

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — Barely a year after surviving a bloodbath at a country music pageant in Las Vegas, Brendan Kelly discovered himself in a terrifyingly acquainted scene.

Kelly, 22, mentioned he used to be dancing with buddies at a bar in suburban Los Angeles on Wednesday evening when the bullets started flying. When the gunfire used to be over, 12 other people had been useless, together with a Navy veteran who had lived during the deadliest mass capturing in trendy U.S. historical past a year in the past.

“I already didn’t wish it on anybody to begin with for the first time,” Kelly mentioned out of doors his house in Thousand Oaks. “The second time around doesn’t get any easier.”

Kelly, a Marine, mentioned he heard “pop, pop” at Borderline Bar and Grill and in an instant knew it used to be gunfire.

“The chills go up your spine. You don’t think it’s real — again,” he mentioned.

The mom of the 27-year-old guy killed in the newest assault, Telemachus “Tel” Orfanos, mentioned her son survived Vegas simplest to die within Borderline, lower than 10 mins from his house.

“Here are my words: I want gun control,” mentioned Susan Schmidt-Orfanos, her voice shaking with grief and rage. “I don’t want prayers. I don’t want thoughts.”

She mentioned she sought after Congress “to pass gun control so no one else has a child that doesn’t come home.”

At a vigil Thursday evening, survivors of each shootings collected to honor those that did not make it.

“It’s hard to sleep after these kinds of things,” mentioned Dani Merrill, who lived during the Vegas capturing and escaped the Borderline bloodshed on the bar through working out the loading dock. “You simply do not understand how to really feel.

During Wednesday’s capturing, Kelly mentioned he threw two of his buddies to the ground and coated them along with his frame. Then he were given a have a look at the shooter and the fear unfolding and made up our minds they had to break out.

Kelly mentioned he dragged one girl out a again emergency go out after which, the usage of his belt, T-shirt and Marine coaching, implemented a tourniquet to his pal’s bleeding arm.

After the capturing used to be over, Kelly mentioned he and every other Marine pal helped sufferers along first responders. Two of his buddies had been amongst the ones killed.

Chandler Gunn, 23, instructed The Los Angeles Times pal who survived the Vegas capturing works on the bar. When Gunn discovered in regards to the capturing, he rushed to Borderline.

Gunn mentioned his pal, whose title he did not supply, escaped safely out the again.

“There’s people that live a whole lifetime without seeing this, and then there’s people that have seen it twice,” he mentioned.

In social media posts, Molly Mauer mentioned she used to be at Borderline and in addition survived Vegas.

“I can’t believe I’m saying this again. I’m alive and home safe,” she mentioned on Facebook.

In Las Vegas and Thousand Oaks, country music fans had been the sufferers. Borderline options country music, and Wednesday used to be “college night” that drew many younger other people to the bar. The Last Vegas shooter centered a crowd of country music fans collected for the Route 91 Harvest Festival.

Kelly has a big tattoo on his left arm memorializing the Las Vegas capturing, which killed 58 other people. On his different arm Thursday, he nonetheless had his wristband from the California bar.

When the Las Vegas gunman opened hearth from a 32nd-floor resort room, Kelly mentioned he threw a pal to the bottom prior to serving to get her out of the realm and right into a room. Armed with a knife in case an attacker got here in, he hunkered down and waited with 40 people for 4 hours.

He mentioned residing via Vegas modified his existence. He does not understand how a 2d mass capturing will impact him down the street.

“Everywhere I go, everything I do is affected,” he mentioned. “I don’t sit in a room with my back to the door. You’re always picking up on social cues. You’re always overanalyzing people, trying to figure out if something were to go down, ‘What would I do?'”

Kelly mentioned Borderline had transform a secure haven for dozens of Vegas survivors: “It is our home.”


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A few weeks after the Vegas capturing, the bar held a receive advantages live performance for 5 other people from the realm who had been killed, and now-eerie social media posts display a lot of survivors conserving up a “Route 91” signal throughout the bar at a six-month anniversary tournament.

Kelly mentioned he’s going to be having a look to God for convenience within the coming weeks and months.

“I know that, being a religious person, that God is never going to give me anything more than I can handle,” he mentioned. “I’m here for a reason.”

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Myers reported from Los Angeles. Associated Press writers Rebecca Boone in Boise, Idaho, and Christopher Weber in Thousand Oaks, contributed.

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