Where Did It Happen?
Often times when on a tour and we are heading down the Strip, I would be asked by a guest to show them where “It” happened. They would never say the words, but just asking for a special place, I knew what they wanted to see.
They wanted to see the site of the worst mass killing in modern American history. The October 1, Route 91 Harvest Festival massacre. In the “festival” lot across from the Luxor resort.
When they get to actually see where it happened, it seems to give them a better understanding of the entire event. That is usually followed by another question: “what was it like being here” or a similarly worded question.
And my answer is very simple and very direct. A) It could have been worse. B) I have never seen the people of Las Vegas, a town know to be unfriendly and its people distant to strangers, come together and offer to help wherever they were needed. People came out from every segment of our society to offer whatever help in every possible way one could imagine.
People Helping People
From commandeering a city bus to get people away from the scene to high rollers offering their private jets to take stranded tourists home or to fly victims to specialty hospitals or clinics. People going into their local Walmart and buying every case of water, snacks, and baby formula so they could pass it out to the people standing in long lines in the summer heat to give blood, or needing supplies while waiting to hear from friends and relatives that were lost in all the chaos. We, the people of Las Vegas, came together and came to help wherever it was needed.
Then the conversation would shift. Maybe politically, maybe socially to the reasons and the cause. This is where the fear factor needed to be changed to the survival factor. Las Vegas is Safe!
I always stress the fact that Las Vegas is indeed one of the safest and yes, best-protected tourist centers in the world.
When you look at how fast the security professional from both the Mandalay Bay hotel and from Metro ( Las Vegas Metropolitan Police), in all the chaos, found, isolated, and eliminated the cause of the shooting, you realize that we are actually pretty well protected here.
Unfortunately, people want answers. They want closure. They don’t want to hear or accept that there are things that happen in this world that you can not plan for, you can not legislate and you can not explain. They just happen and we, as humans, need to deal with it. This was one of those things we could not plan for or prepare for. It Just Happened.
One lone man, staying in a suite on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort, who just wanted to see how much carnage he could cause for no reasonable explanation. One man who had money, had a stable life, no outstanding issues that the professionals would look at and go “that’s what caused him to snap”. There was none of that here. He just did it.
We learned afterward, that he looked at other sites and events before this one. So why did he not do it there? What made him choose this one? The question we will never know the answer to.
Although Las Vegas needed to move on and we did, we never forgot and we never will forget.
Death Toll Climbs
Clark County Sherrif Joe Lombardo revealed on Thursday that he officially increased the number of people killed in America’s deadliest mass shooting from 58 to 60. The change came after two women who died in the past year from injuries they suffered during the 2017 Las Vegas massacre were added to the official death toll.
The Sheriff’s announcement came one day after MGM International and its insurers were ordered to pay $800 million in settlements to more than 4,400 relatives and victims of the shooting.
The lone gunman, Stephen Paddock, killed 60 and wounded some 850 in the shooting before law enforcement brought it to an end. Some claim he committed suicide as they broke down the door to his suite and others say he was shot by the officers as they entered. Either way, he was no longer a threat to anyone anymore.