Las Vegas Massacre Scars Even Those Not There

By Carlos Alvarez EGP Staff Writer

Circulating across the country on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and SnapChat was one message, “Pray for Las Vegas.”

News of the mass shooting Sunday night in Las Vegas, Nevada, had people taking to social media to voice their shock, concerns and prayers for the victims and their families.

From a window on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, Stephen Paddock unleashed a reign of terror that is taking its toll on the country.

From a window on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, Stephen Paddock unleashed a reign of terror that is taking its toll on the country.

At least 58 people were killed and hundreds more were injured. It would be hours, and in some cases days, before the families of some of the victims would know what had become of loved ones at the hotel to enjoy a country music festival.

With all the stories of heroism, sadness and devastation making headlines, Granada Hills resident Kenny Haack is thankful to be alive.

Haack, 43, was in Las Vegas Sunday with his girlfriend to celebrate his birthday. The couple was about to kick off the night’s festivities when they were told by MGM hotel security to stay in their room.

According to Haack, what happened next will forever change his life.

“We could hear police sirens outside and people screaming,” Haack said. “We knew there was a shooting, but didn’t know if there were multiple shooters.”

He says he turned on the room’s television set, and that’s when he got the first glimpse of the horror unfolding just a short distance from his hotel.

People at the music festival were running for their lives, Haack told EGP Tuesday morning, still shaken up despite not having been at the festival.

“Tragedies like these put life into perspective,” Haack said. “We shouldn’t live in fear, but it’s kind of hard to live at all with this on your mind.”

While Haack was one of the fortunate people in Las Vegas that night to escape death or injury, he, like millions of other people across the country, is not without scars.

All across the country, on social media, in hushed conversations at coffee houses, in living rooms, kitchens and classrooms, people are trying to make sense of the tragedy, to get a grip on what would cause someone to open fire on thousands of people gathered to enjoy some good music with family and friends.

They may never know. The gunman, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock of Mesquite, Nevada killed himself that night, leaving too many questions unanswered.


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October 5, 2017  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.


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