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Kimberly and William King oral history interview: transcript


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Oral history interview with Kimberly and William King conducted by Claytee D. White on November 27, 2017 for the Remembering 1 October Oral History Project. In this interview, Kimberly and William King discuss the October 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada and their experiences from that day. They talk about attending the Route 91 Harvest festival and their struggle to find safety and obtain medical medical attention for William after he was shot. Kimberly describes her feelings regarding the city prior to the shooting and how her perspective on Las Vegas has changed. The couple finish the interview with a discussion of life after the shooting, especially in regards to love and community.

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Kimberly and William King oral history interview, 2017 November 27. OH-03348. [Transcript.] Oral History Research Center, Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


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NOVEMBER 27, 2017





This is Claytee White. It is November 27th, 2017, and I am in the home of Kimberly and William King. It is November 27th, 2017. I think that's the right date. I'm going to start with William because Kimberly is doing a gigantic favor, putting something on the private Facebook page.

William, would please pronounce and spell your name for me?

My name is William King. That's W-I-L-I-A-M; that's William. And King, K-I-N-G.

Thank you so much. Where are you from originally?

I'm born and raised in Las Vegas.

What area of the city?

I was actually born at Sunrise Hospital. I have lived all over town, from North Las Vegas, Cashman Field area, to Green Valley, and that's where I went to high school. I've lived on the west side, in The Lakes when The Lakes were just open and that was the new thing. I've lived all around Las Vegas.

Fantastic. I was just saying a few minutes ago how I love this city and you agreed.

Oh, yes, I love Las Vegas. I'm fifth generation. My great-great grandmother was the first midwife here; her name is Rose Warren. She's got a school named after her. My great-great- uncle was the first police officer shot in the line of duty here. My grandma opened up Stateline with Mr. Primm. She's been involved with casinos forever. Our family pretty much was the roots of Las Vegas.

Fantastic. Tell me just a little bit more about Rose.

Rose Warren. I never met her.

Of course, of course.

I just hear stories from my grandma. She was the first midwife here in Las Vegas and she


delivered tons and tons of babies. I know my grandma would always talk about Harry Reid. She delivered Harry Reid.

She worked in Searchlight and all around.

Yes, I guess. That's what they say. I just got little stories from my grandma. I know she has a school named after her and she's in the top one hundred influential people in Las Vegas from what the Internet says.

The last name Warren...I know a woman who is Elizabeth Warren out in...It's not Searchlight, but it's one of the other little villages out. Do you know if you're related to...?

There could be tons of possibilities. My grandma has all that information. But Las Vegas is a small town when it comes down to it.

If your family has paper records that one day you want to donate that's what Special Collections does. I work in an area of the library at UNLV. We have the papers of Helen J. Stewart. We have the letters that Helen J. Stewart wrote back and forth to her daughter who was in school in Los Angeles. Those are the kinds of things we save so that historians and researchers from all over the world can use that.

I would love to get my grandma to...I've always talked about recording and kind of doing what we're doing now with my grandma.

What is your grandmother's name?

That's Laura Thornton.

Would she be willing to sit for an interview with us to talk about the family?

Right now she's in Minersville, in Utah, so she's in Utah.

How often does she visit you?

Not really often at all. She hasn't been out of Utah for a while. Her health is kind of getting to the


point...Of course, we need to see her and I've always talked about having a recorder and just hearing her and having her...

I'll have to teach you how to do an interview, loan you my recorder, and have you interview her.

Yes. I've been talking about that forever.

It's time.

Yes. She has the time. She's got tons of stories.

Does anyone know some of the story, like your mother?

My mom, a little, a little. My grandma is the one that has all that.

Let's talk later on.

Like the early 1900s.

Yes. Oh, that would be interesting.

Talking about they had to have stuff for the Paiute Indians when they were going through because if they didn't have something for them, then they wouldn't be able to get through. She talked about canning fruits on old Charleston Boulevard and all these fruit trees, all this stuff, natural geysers out here, things that I wouldn't even know of because things are so developed now. Her visions of her memories are great.

Yes, we're going to stay in touch.

Kimberly, are you ready to spell your name for me?


Kimberly and William are together here.

As I ask questions, you can just join in and answer. Kimberly, tell me a little about your background. Are you from Las Vegas, also?


No. I was born in East L.A.; however, I was raised in Phoenix, Arizona. When my mother passed away in 2007, I moved out here permanently with my father and I've been here ever since.

Do you love Las Vegas, as well?

Honestly, before all of this I didn't. I actually was already trying to move out, especially with my business. I wanted to grow it outside of Vegas. I didn't want my kids raised here, especially because being from an outsider you automatically think Vegas is like Sin City and you just don't want to raise your kids around it. Since October first it's totally changed my perspective about Vegas.

Tell me how.

The way that I've seen the community just come together. It just showed that everything is different. It's not just the Strip. There's actually families and the way that they've all come together to help out. I've seen different stories, like in Houston and Miami, Florida, when the hurricanes happened, and they just had happened prior to October first, and I would see those stories of people charging a ridiculous amount of money over water. Instead of helping out their people, they were just jeopardizing them even more. Vegas didn't do that. Vegas actually came together. Everybody just came together. It didn't matter what it was.

Two days after we came back from the hospital, there was a power outage here in our neighborhood and it was around two or three in the morning and it woke us up. Just with the PTSD and everything that had just happened, automatically we both started freaking out and I didn't feel safe. I felt like they were coming to kill us, probably turning off our alarm system. Everything was going through my head. So I called the police. Then the operator on the phone immediately knew what was going on with me. She was like, "Everything is going to be okay. Have you gone to counseling?" She just asked me, "Were you there?" Because she saw the


anxiety I was having. I was just telling her, "They're going to come and kill me." She was very patient with me and it just showed me that it wasn't what just happened there; that now it just went all over, especially Henderson, and it didn't matter where it was. So I definitely want to raise my kids around these people.

Good. I love that. Thank you so much.

Did your opinion of your city change at all?

It made my heart bigger for my city, especially when I talk about obviously my experience. Once I got inside the hospital, just seeing the nurses and the doctors and just everybody came together. What I saw back in there was a lot of people scrambling to save a lot of people's lives. It just was like, wow, this is crazy that it was just catapulted upon us, and just seeing how the front line...Because not everybody would have seen what I saw unless they were there. So seeing the doctors and the nurses just get down to the nitty-gritty was pretty amazing.

Tell me about this festival. Tell me about country music in your lives first.

[Laughing] You can go first on that one.

Kimberly, tell me about country music.

Prior to meeting William, I've loved country music. I'm actually really Latina and I feel like country music was like Spanish music. Spanish music is very romantic and it's hard to find nowadays. With all the rap music and all the things that kids listen to now, I feel like it's all garbage. So the way that I compare them is country music and Spanish music is very romantic and their lyrics mean so much. Prior to me meeting him, I've always loved country music. I would think, okay, well, I'm going to be with a white boy and he's going to love country music. And he hates country music. He doesn't like it.

I wouldn't say I hate it.


He doesn't understand it.

Hate is a strong word.

Okay. He dislikes it very much.

I would say dislike and it's growing on me to a point.

He does everything for me, so for the past three years I have actually gone to Route 91 and he's made that possible. I've seen many country artists and he's made it possible for me. He doesn't go with me. He just tells me—

I have.

He went once with me and then he went the first night and we argued because I wanted to be in the front and he was like, "No, let's just stay out here." And I was like, "No, I have to be in the front. It's Lady Antebellum." I'm that crazy about country music.

So this year was actually going to be the first year that we weren't going to go. He actually messaged me at seven in the morning that Sunday morning and was like, "Hey, I just got these wristbands. Jason Aldean is tonight. So hopefully this will cheer you up." I was really excited because it was Jason Aldean and I haven't seen Jason Aldean. He says that he has a bucket list for me, so he checks them all off for me, all the ones that I want to see.

Basically I worked all that day. I work for Primerica during its month end. So at the end of the month, we basically go all out and try to make our sales before the end of the month. So I was working all day and we decided to go until Jason Aldean, so we got there around nine o'clock at night.

So you got there at nine o'clock. Tell me what happened.

Basically we got there. We walked all that huge trail to get inside. Then once we got inside, we were hungry.


The huge trail, where was this?

It's the big old walkway on Las Vegas Boulevard.

Which brings you into the entrance.

It brings you into the concert, yes, into the venue.

Was there a line at nine o'clock?

No, there was no line. Basically we go inside and then we pass by the hats. The first thing we see is the cowboy hats and I told him, "I've been wanting one so bad." I was like, "Let's go; I want to check them out." We were about twenty minutes in there just checking them out. I was trying on hats and stuff. Then I don't know what it was, we were about to buy it and then I was like, "Babe, no. How about we buy it when we leave?" I was like, "Because it might fly away." It was crazy because there was no wind. So I don't even know why I said that because I was like, "I don't want to lose it." That's what I said. He was like, "Okay, whatever, we'll buy it when we leave." So then we went to go get some food. We had a funnel cake and we had some chili cheese fries and a burger. When Jake Owen was on stage, we ended up going to where the blacktop was at.

Describe the venue to me. You entered from Las Vegas Boulevard.

Yes. Actually, give me one second.

She has the layout. She can pretty much tell you exactly where we were at and where we exited.

That's good. How did you get the tickets?

I actually work at Delano Las Vegas as a bellman. I work on the property where it happened. So I was checking out a guest. It was the first guest that I saw in the morning and they were checking out and I knew they were there for the event. I was like, "Oh, you're not staying for the third night." And they go, "No, we're leaving." And I go, "Oh, I made the last two years. I haven't made it this year." They were like, "Well, here, you can have our bracelets." So they gave me the


bracelets and that's when I messaged Kimberly and I was like, "Hey, I hope this cheers you up." Yes, pretty much checked out a guest and got the bracelets.

This is basically the venue. This is the entrance right here.

Where did you get this?

Actually, a survivor sent this to me. She actually worked the venue and then she said that she had a whole packet of them in her backpack, so she mailed it to me.

So this is the entrance. Basically when we walked inside, we walked past all of this. This is the first stage. So there's two stages. This is the main stage and this is the Next from Nashville.

This is the only time I've been able to understand what people are saying by that second stage.

Yes. It's all the way in the beginning in the front of the entrance. This is basically the smaller stage. This Next from Nashville, it's basically all the new artists that are not really A-list celebrities, but it's the new ones, locals and stuff. It's a huge tent there. That's actually covered up by a tent, that stage. We basically...Right here where it says "The Harvest Market," this is where all the venues, all the...


Merchandise and stuff like that. So that's where we were at. All around here there's the food carts and stuff as well. So you have all the food carts here and here. Then right here where you see all these trees, it's like a big old long thing of palm trees.

How much area are we talking about?

Wow. This is about...

If you think about the corner of Luxor, on that corner, so Luxor? Imagine Luxor to Excalibur pretty much because that is all across the street. That is basically the exact size of the lot.


Yes. It's a really big venue.

Yes, it is. It's huge.

It's a pretty big venue.

Yes. Basically we were just eating and stuff and then we walk here. So this is all blacktop. Right here there is people that were dancing. Right here there are people that are in their lawn chairs. This is where all the lawn chairs, people with families are just sitting there listening to the concert. So this right here is a grass area. So this is all grass area. Right now Jake Owen is on stage and we're right here in the blacktop. We're just listening and I just sat down on the floor and I was just listening to him. It was probably like his last two songs.

You can see even with the people here on the grass?


Where is the VIP area?

There's different VIP areas. There's a VIP standing room only right here. There's also VIP in the House of Blues. There's VIP here; there's VIP here; there's VIP in here.

Yes. And they also have those like little huts, like houses, like two-story.

Right. Which is here, little huts right here. This is VIP as well. This is all general admission all over here. Then basically once he got offstage, I just told him, "Okay, let's go to the front." I was like, "I want to go to the front," as I usually go. He's like, "Okay." Right here in the very corner of this side there is like a little bar area. Then this right here that you see is the middle? Right there was a whole bunch of vendors as well. So there is the bar area; there's bars there, there's food.

It was like the center of—

And they're not in the way? They're not blocking the view?


It basically splits these two things.

But it doesn't block the view from the people sitting back here?

No, the stage is so big. The stage right here. The stage comes in the middle, so it's kind of like a catwalk. Basically he gets offstage. We started getting closer. There was two different—there was a trash can here, a trash can here, a trash can here and a trash can here. We stopped right here on the second trash can. We see people that—when the artist comes offstage, that's time to relax. You go to the bathroom. It's probably about forty minutes before the next artist comes on stage. So that's when you go get your beer. You fill up on beer or whatever you need to do. So there was also people that were in the grass area that were on the floor. It was so dark there that I remember telling him, "Is that grass that they're sitting on?" And he's like, "Is it blacktop?" We couldn't tell because we were all sitting on the floor. We didn't want to get in there while they were all sitting, so we were just going to wait until they all stood up. So when they finally all stood up, we went into the grass area, and that's when we both looked at each other and we were like, "It is grass." So I was pretty happy because my feet were already starting to hurt. I don't even know why I had these sandals. They were the most uncomfortable sandals ever. I just told him, "Hey, I already feel like I'm getting a little bit of blisters coming on, so I just want to stay here. Can we just stay here?" He was just totally fine with it, so he's like, "Yeah, that's fine."

Can you give me the pen, baby?

We were right here. That's where we were. Then basically Jason Aldean came on stage. Once he comes on, I get really, really excited. We start recording some of his songs and stuff. There is a song "A Little More Summertime," when that song comes on, we start dancing. I think it was probably five songs that he played and then the last song was "Any Old Barstool." So I'm listening to it and then at the end of it I hear probably like six shots that are fired and it's like,


pop, pop, pop, pop.

Did you think they were fireworks?

No. I immediately—

You knew that it was shots?

Yes. So I was just like, "Are those gunshots?" And he—

Did you feel the same thing?

No. I was the other way around. I thought they were fireworks.

Yes. Because he looked at me and he's like, "No, they're fireworks." Because then I looked up and I was like, "There is no fireworks, Babe." I don't know why, I just got this horrible, horrible cold feeling in my heart. It was so unexplainable because it felt like I was in danger. I immediately felt uncertain. I couldn't concentrate anymore. I kept on looking all around. He was just listening to the concert and I was just very unsteady. Then Jason Aldean comes back on stage and he sings his next song. So then right when we started singing that's when the whole round just goes off. Then we started looking up. We're like, what the heck is going on? Then he gets offstage at the exact moment that the shots stopped firing. So that round goes off. So when he stops singing is the exact moment that the shots stop. So all the sudden then people were like, "Oh my God, it's the speakers." So then everybody started thinking it was the sound system. Then I see him running offstage. So when I see him running offstage, I just grab him and I'm like, "Babe, he ran offstage." So then he is just like, "Oh, it's probably the sound system." It was weird because everybody was mimicking each other.

So then all the sudden the next round goes off. And with the next round, everybody falls on the floor. So we all fall on the floor. We didn't know this until later on, but apparently the very first shots were being fired right here.


Toward the stage.

Towards the stage and towards the front of the stage. So there were people already from the first round that got shot, right here. But the thing is that this group of people right here were still standing up, so we didn't see anything that was going on in the front. So these people were being shot and these people were standing up and then we were all on the floor. So it was like these middle people were blocking our view to see what was actually going on. All of us that were on the floor, we were really dumbfounded. We were sitting ducks. So we didn't know. People were like, "It is shots; it is shots." Then there's people that are like, "No, it's fireworks." Everybody was talking to each other while we were on the floor. There was this guy that was standing up; while the shots were being fired, he was standing up and he was like, "You guys are all idiots. It's all fireworks. Stand up. It's all fireworks."

Then at that exact moment I told him, "You know what? I don't care if it's fireworks, if it is or not. I just want to leave. I'm scared." Prior to that he threw his body on top of me. So he had his body like all over my face and I just remember having his armpit over my neck. When I told him that, he's like, "Okay, let's go."

So he stood up and my face was underneath him. He kind of stood up like a pushup style to push up his body and that's when he got shot. I remember seeing the bullet him in the back and then the blood just splattered all over my face. I just couldn't move after that. I was shocked. He kept trying to talk to me, but I didn't respond to him. But I kept responding in my head; I kept responding to him in my head. He was like, "Mother fucker, I got shot. He shot me." He was cussing at the guy who shot him. He didn't know who he was, but he knew somebody pulled the trigger, so he was just cursing at him.

The way that I saw the bullet hit him, I saw that it came from the top. So I thought that he


was being shot from the VIP tent, which was right here. So I'm like, oh my God, they're in the VIP tent. Automatically that's what I thought. I was just like, that's it; we're done; we're all sitting here. I couldn't move and I remember him grabbing my face and telling me, "You have to run; you have to run."

This was after you were shot. You still knew.


So go ahead, tell me how you knew.

Well, like Kimberly was saying, what I say is a deer in the headlights; I was stuck. Honestly, once Kimberly said she was scared and she wanted to go—I say the bullet woke me up. Once it hit me, I got mad, like what Kimberly said, and I cursed. I knew I got shot by somebody. So I just covered up where it was coming from, which was my upper left chest. So I just covered my wound and I grabbed Kimberly and I just got us out of there in that period of time until we got out down the street.

How did you get out? You are surrounded by people.

Yes. We're all on the floor.

Yes. Once I got hit, I don't remember.

He was like, "I need you to run; I need you to run." I wouldn't respond to him. He yelled at me. He's like, "Do you hear me? I need you not to let go of my hand." He told me not to let go of his hand. I was literally not moving or anything. He grabbed me from my wrist. So he didn't grab me from my hand; he grabbed me from my wrist. I remember grabbing him back because I had a little tote bag and I had a shirt and my blanket in there. When we started running it was crazy because it was the exact moment that everybody else started running.

Yes. That's what I thought.


So at that moment everybody started running. We were just jumping over people.

Do you remember the direction that you ran?

I don't even remember that.

Yes. We were jumping over people here. There were so many people on the floor here. But we ran this way. So we ran this way. Then he was running towards this way because he was trying to get into the exit. When we were running this way, I remember this girl that she was—so I was seeing it was all in slow motion for me. There was people being shot in the back. There was people being shot in the legs. They would fall when they would get shot in the legs. Nothing really serious. I was just seeing people dropping like flies. I was just like, oh my God, it's me next; it's me next. Then this girl turned around and she's running with us, like she's going after Billy. She sees that Billy's taking me, so she's running with us. When we were about to go here, we're turning this way, she's right next to me and she gets shot in the face. So she gets shot in the face from a bullet that came from here; that's the way that I saw it. So I was just like, "No, no, no, they're coming from here." I was like, "Let's go this way." That's what woke me up. I finally started talking right there because I saw her get shot. So then we went this way. I told him, "Let's go this way instead."

What is that? That's a gate?

There was a gate and it was open. So it was open, so we started coming out of that gate. Then we ran all the way down here. So this is Giles Street. Remember how, baby, you keep saying that it's Reno?

I thought it was Reno.

No, this is Reno.

So that's something like Giles or something, G-I-L-E-S, I think?


Yes, G-I-L-E-S Street.

I don't even know.

So then we were running down this way and right here is the church.

The big Catholic church.

Yes. So then we're running. First of all, when we're running here, we could see right here there is a police officer. It's an SUV police car. Right away we were running, he tells me, "You need to get me help; you need to get me help, Kim. I'll run, but you need to get me help." So I started telling everybody. People were running next to us and I was like, "My husband has been shot; my husband has been shot. Help me; help me." And nobody would listen to me. Then we saw the police car and we were like, "Let's go to the police car." Automatically we felt safe. I was like, oh my God, there's a police car right there. We're going to get him help. There was nobody inside the police car. Then we saw the police officer right here was telling everybody, "Get out; get out; get out," telling everybody to get out. There was another police officer that was right here and there were people around his legs, like holding on to him. There was still shooting, so they were scared and they were holding him. The fear in his eyes...

The police officer?

Yes, in the police officer's eyes, the fear in his eyes, I was just right there and I felt like it was the end of the world. I just felt like not even a police officer can save us. It's happening everywhere. I felt that the bullets were still chasing us.

Could you see bullets landing this far away?

No, no.

You just thought.

Yes, because it was so loud. We just kept on running, kept running. Then right here—the


Tropicana is right here—we basically were crossing a street and right when we crossed the street, I started screaming again that my husband has been shot. This guy comes up to us and he's like—the bullets had stopped right there; that round had stopped—he's like, "He's been shot? Come here, come here, come here; dude, come here. I got you." We let go of our hands for a quick second. He was just like, "Sit down, sit down." He was about to sit down. He was about to sit down so he could help him and then the shots started again. Right when they started he was like, "Oh, hell no." He just pushed him and he's like, "Come here," and grabbed me again and we started running. He was just like, "No, we're going to have to keep running until they..." Because we just didn't know where they were coming from. So we ran to the Tropicana. At the Tropicana there was these electric units that were huge bins. People were hiding underneath them, behind them. There was people screaming everywhere. We just kept running. I kept telling everybody, "Stop hiding, just keep running. Don't hide, just keep running."

We were in the back of the Tropicana and there was kind of like a room that's kind of open. Billy says it's where the casino gets all their loads in.


Yes, the docks and stuff. So we go in there and it's like a stampede of people just going in there. So we start following them. Right when we go in there, I could see right away when I went in there, there was a huge hallway and I could see people banging on the doors because they were locked inside, so nobody could get in. So I turn around and I start telling everybody, "No, no, no, it's locked; it's locked. Keep going that way." So we turned around and we kept running. We were knocking on doors and nobody would open them. We were just like giving up hope that none of these doors are going to open.

All the sudden we're running towards the edge of the Tropicana and there was this guy


that was dressed like a chef, like a cook. He opened the door. I remember he is African American. He was just like, "Come in." But he had this face like, okay, idiots, like he had no clue what was going on. So he was just like, "Why are you guys all screaming?" He's like, "I'll just open the door for you guys." So he opened the door.

Then right away there was this lady. I remember she was a brunette and she was probably in her thirties and she had this pantsuit on. She just looked like a manager, like a supervisor. She had a wristband full of keys and she had her walkie-talkie. I told her, "Please find him help. He's been shot; he's been shot." She was just like, "Oh my God." She grabbed a chair and sat him down next to the vending machine. She was just like, "Stay here. I'm going to go get help." Then that's when she saw the whole pour of people just coming in after us. So at that exact moment they were running inside the hallway and it was like a HR place. It was like the HR for Tropicana and everybody was running in there.

They were still firing shots; we could still hear them. I was scared. I was so scared because I was like we're stopping and we shouldn't be stopping because they're probably coming after us. Then all the sudden people started screaming, "There's a shooter in here; there's a shooter in here." I just didn't know what to do right there because he was sitting on the chair. He was getting pale now. The adrenaline was coming down already, so he was getting pale. They started freaking out because the casino went on lockdown. So when they were trying to go inside further, the doors locked on them. So they started freaking out, some people. I was just like, "Oh my God, there's a shooter in here. Let's go; let's go." This guy told me, "No, no, no. The casino is on lockdown, so that's why they're freaking out; they can't open the doors." So I was like, "Okay, okay." Then I started screaming. I was just like, "Can anybody give me any medical attention for him? Please. Somebody? Anybody?"


I don't remember seeing him, but I do remember this girl coming up to me because there was this guy that went up to him and then she came up to meet her friends and they were trying to calm me down and they circled me into a corner and they were like, "It's okay, my boyfriend is a surgeon. He's a surgeon. He's going to help him. He's going to help your husband." I was like, "Okay, okay." I remember being so thirsty. I was so out of breath and my throat hurt so much because it was so dry. I know that he was thirsty, too. I see this girl running and she had a water bottle on her wrist and I just snatched the water bottle out of her hand and then I grabbed it and started drinking some and then I gave some to him so he can drink. I don't know what happened to that surgeon. I don't know what happened. But there was a lot of people trying to help him. Then he says that there was this Marine that went up to him and was like, "I'm going to pray with you," and he started praying with him.

He was just like, "I've been through a lot of shit." He's like, "You're going to make it." He just prayed with me and then he left.

After that, that's when Joey and Paola came in. I remember seeing them come in. They're a really good-looking couple. We made fun of it because we were like, man, it was like celebrities. They were really good-looking.

Who are they?

He's the Marine that saved his life. He came in and he mainly saw that I was a hot mess. Then he told his wife, "Take care of her." So she came and she was trying to calm me down. Then she's like—now I remember what she told me; I didn't remember before—she told me, "You need to be strong for him. You cannot lose it right now. You need to be strong for him. You need to calm down because right now he's shot, so you need to be strong for him. You need to be his strength." I was like, "Okay." I was just trying to calm down.


He said that he was a Marine. He said that he was going to stop his bleeding. He went and put pressure. I remember him screaming a little.

Yes, because he really put pressure-pressure on me.

Yes. He stopped his bleeding.

Did you still have the blanket?

I still had the blanket and the tote bag.

No, I think you tossed it.

No, I still had it.

Oh, you still had it. You tossed it when we were going.

Yes, because he was like, "Do you have anything?" Because his shirt was full of blood. So he said, "Do you have anything?" I was like, "Oh, I have a shirt in here." I had a shirt inside the bag. So they put that shirt and he held it and that's the way that he stopped his bleeding. I remember he was just like, "I need to go find him help. I need to go find him help, so I'll be right back." I was so scared for him going back out there.

It's so crazy. One of my clients was there. He had a walkie-talkie and he's like, "Everybody run." He was security at the venue. He's like, "Everybody go this way; everybody go this way." And then he sees him and he's like, "You guys got to go; you guys got to go," that were around him. Then they were like, "He's been shot." He's like, "Oh crap, he's been shot?" Then he looks at me. He's like, "Wait a minute." He's like, "I know you." I was like, "Yeah, yeah, yeah," like whatever, I don't care. "Can you just help him out?" Then he's like, "Aren't you my agent?" I was like, oh my God. I was like, "Yes, I'm your agent, but can you help him out?" He's like, "Yeah, yeah, yeah." He got on the walkie-talkie and he's like, "I need medical assistance at the..." I think he said south hall of Tropicana and then he started explaining where he was at.


Then the guy on the walkie-talkie told him, "Dude, you're not going to be able to get him an ambulance because there's shooters in the casino."

So then he was like, "Okay, we've got to get out of here," he told me. He's like, "We've got to get out of here." So then I was like, "Okay, well, I don't know what to do." That's when Joey came back inside and Joey was like, "Look, there is no ambulances around here, so the only thing that we can do is walk him further out to another casino." So then I was like, "Okay." But I was like, "They're still shooting." He's like, "We just have to do it; we have to do it." He's like, "He's going to die here if we don't." So I was like, "Okay." They both grabbed him; one of him grabbed him from one shoulder and the other.

They were like, "Do you need to call anybody?" A girl said that. "Do you need to call anybody?" Then I was like, "Oh, yes, can you call my mentor?" I asked them to call my mentor. I don't even know why, but I asked them. I knew that he was going to—because he's religious, so I knew that he was going to pray for me. She's like, "Okay." Then she grabs her phone. I remember it was rose gold phone. She grabbed her phone out of her pocket and she realized that her phone was shot and it had a bullet in it. Then she's like, "What the heck?" She looks in the back of it and she's bleeding in the back of her butt. I was like, okay, well, that phone is not going to work.

Then I turned around and I told Billy, I was like, "I need your phone." I asked him for his phone. He had both of our phones. So he stayed with my phone and I grabbed his phone. So then I started calling my mentor. I called him. I was calling him and calling him. The thing is we were inside the Tropicana and there was no signal. He wasn't answering because it was no signal, so the call wasn't going through.

So when we were coming out of the Tropicana, we were starting to walk towards


Hooters. I remember being on the phone and it was 10:38 and I was on the phone with my mentor and I told him what was going on. He didn't believe me. He was just like, "What? What are you talking about?" The thing is that he's from here. He works with me. But the thing is that he was in Miami at that time, so he had no clue what was going on, and it was one in the morning where he was at. I was just like, "Yes, Billy's been shot. He was shot in the heart and he's going to die and I know he's going to die. I need you to help me and to be able to understand this."

We were walking. I remember Paola just holding me and hugging me and she was like, "It's going to be okay." Then people started screaming more, "They're behind us; they're behind us. Run, run, run." Then I went to run and my client, he was just like—DeJuan; his name is DeJuan—and he like, "Don't run; don't run." He's like, "We're okay. We're steady. We're walking towards Hooters. We have to just be steady and walk." So he was like, "You're okay. You're okay, Kimberly, right?" I remember him calling me Kimberly and it felt so good to know that somebody knew me, somebody called me by my name. I was just like, "Yes, I'm okay; I'm okay."

So we walked towards Hooters and there was people in front of the MGM getting ran over. They were crossing the street and there was people that were jumping in front of cars and trying to open their doors. Like imagine you being a regular person driving by and then there's people just trying to open your doors. I would probably run them over, too. What's going on here? People were getting ran over and I didn't want to get ran over. So I was on the phone with him and I was like, "I don't know what to do. There's no ambulances. I hear the ambulances, but I don't see anybody." He's like, "Where are you at?" I'm like, "I'm under the valet in Hooters." He's like, "Do you see any cars?" I'm like, "Okay, there's a car coming in right now." Then he's


like, "Jump in front of it." I was like, "Okay."

I jumped in front of it and that was Paloma. I was like, "Please, please, take him to the hospital." She said, "I can't. I'll get in trouble." But she had no idea what was going on. She just thought it was a random guy just got shot. I was like, "Please." And I started speaking to her in Spanish and I told her, "Don't let him die." I was like, "If you want to just take him, just take him, but don't let him die, please." And then I just told her, "Thank you. Please take him." She's like, "Okay, get him in the car." So we get him in the car.

Then Joey was like, "Do you guys want us to go with you?" Then Billy said, "Please, come with us." Then they got in the car with us. Joey got in the front seat. Paola and me, we were in the back with him. Our goal was to find an ambulance so that we could load him into the ambulance before we got to the hospital, but we were driving in the direction of the hospital. We would see ambulances. We would stop our car and wave at them and they wouldn't stop. We were just driving.

I remember Jeff, which is my mentor, he was like, "I want to do a prayer with you. Can we do a prayer?" I was like, "Please." So we did a prayer and he prayed for my strength, to be able to get through what was about to happen. He just prayed for Billy and for all of us. It's crazy because we all were there and we all said amen at the same time. It was just so...We didn't know each other, but we just cared about each other so much in that car.

And then I was trying to joke.


Because I was born at Sunrise Hospital. I was like, "Well..." Because we were trying to figure out which hospital to go to and we said, "Sunrise." And I said, "Well, I was born there, so I guess I'll die there." Then they were like, "Uh..."


I wanted to kill him. I was like, are you serious, Billy? You're really going to say that right now? Then that's when Jeff heard him and he was like, "Is he talking?" Then I'm like, "Yes, that's him talking." He's like, "Tell him to shut up." I was like, oh my God.

I remember we were crossing red lights, red lights.

We got behind those ambulances because they were behind us and then we stopped and then for some reason we were going to try...I don't know, with all the commotion and everything, they were honking at us, right?


We just got back in the car and they went around us. So then Paloma just started to follow them.

Yes. Then once we got to the hospital I remember pulling up and there was a whole bunch of doctors outside and there was police officers already and those ambulances barely going in. We were actually one of the first people there. We get off the car. I remember getting off and just going around the car and I'm on the phone still. I'm holding the phone like this. Then they see him and they're like, "He's been shot." I just said, "Please help him." Was that Kevin? It was Kevin right then, Kevin Menes, the doctor?

The doctor? I think he was outside, wasn't he?

Yes. He was the one that said...So Kevin Menes was the doctor that saw him and that's why he tagged him yellow tag. Later on we found out that yellow tag meant that he was going to die within minutes to hours, and red tag was seconds to minutes, and then green tag was probably going to make it through the night. So when he tagged him that, he was just like, "It's a yellow tag. GSW to the chest." Then he said, "Get him into surgery." Then when they said that it was a GSW to the chest, I was just like, okay. I remember that that was like the very first time that we actually finally just separated.


Do you remember this part?

Once we got right to the hospital? Oh, yes, definitely. Yes, that's when...

Did the doctor take you away immediately?

Oh, yes, they took me right in. Once I got in there, they put me back. There was one guy already in there and he didn't look like he was in good condition at all.

He was one of the first people there. They just grabbed him and they were just like—did they put you in a wheelchair?

Yes, they put me in a wheelchair. And then once they got me back into there, they were trying to find a bed. And then they did give me a bed, but what happened was just a mass volume of people started to come in. So there was that guy that was there, they kind of moved him. Then they brought in that one girl that had her face pretty much shot off. That was—

Natalie Grumet.

They brought her in. I was like, oh man, because it was bad. From there that's when they rolled in that guy. What's his name, John? John, I think it was. I can't remember his name. But he was an older gentleman that he got shot in the head. So when they brought him in, he was kind of like a vegetable; he was there, but not there. So when they brought him in, I'm like sitting there watching all this. Nobody's worrying about me or focused on me at all. But I was fine. I was just in shock and just watching everybody. I was just thinking in my mind, is somebody going to help me out soon? But I was just watching everybody come in and how worse they were. They were going to start—because they were getting so full, they were basically now shifting me out to another area. I'm like, "Take my bed; just put me in a wheelchair." Then from there they took me down and they finally got me into this one area where I was there with one lady. She was shot in the back of her butt. It was through her butt. Then there was the twins that were across from me.


We were just there at that point and from there it was just all the chaos and everything going on. They kept X-raying me. I was like, well, they already X-rayed me. It got to one point when they came in and I told them everything that was going on. Then one doctor, he was trying to stick a lung tube in me because they were thinking my lung was collapsed or something was going on. I was like, "No." I didn't want it at all because they had just did that to one of the girls and it sounded like she was in excruciating pain, and I was like, "No, I don't want that." So they did an ultrasound on me and the guy was like, "I think he's okay." I was like, "Yeah, I'm okay; I'm good; I'm good." I'm hurt, but I didn't want to get that plug that they were doing. So from there I think that's when they gave me morphine and stuff and then I was out.

They took you into an operating room at some point?

They never operated on me at all. They just said that you'll probably have shrapnel in you.

The bullet missed—the doctor told me that it missed everything by like a half a centimeter.

So all the vital organs were missed.

Yes, yes. It was crazy. They kept coming in, kind of puzzled. Yes, everything, the timing, just everything. I don't know. They say miracles, so I'd like to believe that.

Yes. When you talk about this now, what does it do for you to talk about it? Is it good for you to talk about it?

Yes. In the beginning that's all I wanted to do was to talk about it. In the beginning I just wanted to talk about it. I wanted to just let it out. Just different emotions. In the beginning I didn't even know what to feel. I didn't know who shot at us. I have no sort of feeling towards that man at all. I have no anger towards him. I have no hate or nothing. I have no feeling towards him. It's like he's invisible. I think now it's more just sadness, just sadness.

We do feel blessed that we're alive and we feel like we have a purpose. I just have a hard


time. I've lost so many people that I loved. My mother died. Then I got married and my mother-in-law became my mother and she died. I've just had very important people pass away in my life. I was just waiting for them to just tell me he was dead. I just told them when they called me in, I was just like, "Just tell me he's dead. I already know he's dead." She was like, "No, we just called you in to let you know that there is a William King here." I'm like, "Well, no shit, I brought him in here." I was so angry. I was like, "Can you just let me know if he is dead or not?" I just wanted to know so I could already start healing. My thing is just it made me realize that he is that important person in my life. I know we're all going to die. We're all going to die. We have a day that we're going to pass away. Before I couldn't wait for the moment that I died so I could be with my mother again. One day it's going to happen and when it happens I'll be happy. I'll be content because I'll be with my mother. But now when this is happening, all I wanted to do was live.

Great. How long were you in the hospital?

Two days. I was released Tuesday.

So they put you in a room eventually?

Yes, they put me in a room. From there, family, visitors, whatnot. It was pretty crazy. Now to think back on it, I still get shocked and I still have lots of emotions and a lot of feelings. As Kimberly said, we're blessed and I definitely try to focus on that side more than any side. But right now the mysteriousness, those things are now all starting to come me and I'm now more angry because if everything that you see that occurs, there's always a trail. There's not a trail on this. They like to try to chalk it up now as being something very simple, oh, it's just a guy and he was frustrated or he was a gambler. Literally you know when they say money can put you on certain levels, it almost feels like this guy was on another level. There's something mysterious


about this. There's not something like the guy that rented the U-Haul and ran people over in New York. You knew he was with ISIS; he claimed it; he said it; this; that. I understand this dude died and they couldn't get much off of a dead guy, but you can. And this guy has nothing. He has really no trail. Oh, he made money with real estate. But there's no trail. This guy, to have all these weapons, to do what he did, he was trained. There is stuff there. Yes, you can learn a lot of things on YouTube and, granted, I know that and I get that and that's what this new generation does. They have so much available to learn from. But, no, there is more to this.

Stuff that's not said.

I guarantee you—it just feels like they're trying to cover something up. They're just trying to sweep it under the rug and act like, okay, he was a crazy guy, he shot and that's it. To me it's like the case is closed and I'm really not happy about that. I'm really very upset. Granted, being in the company that I work for with MGM and it being where I work and it being their property and their venue, and I'm now getting angry and I'm upset because, like after the fact of now—after I hear these things that are all now coming out, and obviously we have all these lawyers and all this evidence and all this stuff is now coming out, the one thing that frustrates me is the service elevator because that's where I work; I work in that. When they were saying he had access to the service elevator, I want to know; I want to know what kind of access because only employees are supposed to have access. I have a master key, which I open up the door and I know. That's what puzzles me and that's what frustrates me, how did somebody get into those service elevators? That's what frustrates me and upsets me because I'm an employee, I'm in that environment and I've worked there. That's the one thing that really started getting me to thinking. Now I'm like, okay, now I'm getting angry; now I'm frustrated because—

Because high rollers don't have access to those elevators.


I've done things with certain people that have come in, like Usher, certain bands, certain things. Yes, we do that, but they're with us. There is security. There's management that they have that directly deals with our management. So it's very secure. It's very tight. But I don't know. I know there are VIPs that we take care of and we do, but I've never heard of them saying, here, you have access to the service elevator. Being in Delano, we did at one time, because the elevators that go through, they actually go up to the Mix. There are certain high-level suites there that actually go up to—at that time which was called Mix; now it's called Greve where they could go up, but they've gotten rid of that; they don't have that access anymore. That's the one thing that got me really thinking and got me really frustrated is the service elevator. I'm like, what the...?

And you're talking to your attorney about that, of course.

I don't have an attorney at all yet. We haven't gone that route. In my mind now that I'm soaking all of this stuff up and I'm hearing about it, I'm just like, wow. That's the one thing that got me really aggravated was that and I'm like, what the heck? It makes me want to know more. But honestly, I still feel like they're just sweeping this under the carpet, which is really frustrating and sad to me because I feel like there's a lot more to it and they're just trying to say, oh, some weird wacko. But, no, there's something else. That's just my gut.

It sounds as if you followed your gut a lot through this and you guys got out. When you look at yourself, what has this experience taught you about you?

It's definitely made our love a hundred times stronger. We've gotten closer. Right now I have more separation anxiety, so we do everything together. We haven't really been apart since it happened. It's more just count our blessings.


We enjoy our children more and our family. We know that we have a purpose. We want to be


able to do something that is going to change lives.

Good. I think you've started.

After this and just prior, obviously there's so much hate and we're seeing so many examples of it. To me it seems like it's gotten a lot heavier after Nine Eleven. Obviously our world changed in a moment. Now I just feel like it's...I don't know. I don't get what it is, I just know that it seems like hate is now being more glorified and actually being more promoted than love.

But don't you think this city showed love in a way that was just unreal?

Oh, guaranteed, yes.

How can we continue that? How can we make this the city of lights in a new way?

Don't forget.

Yes, don't forget.

For it to be about Vegas Strong, Vegas Strong should be now what Vegas is. It shouldn't just be Sin City because Sin City is more Vegas. Every time when somebody thinks about Vegas, they call it Sin City.

So we can change that now.

Yes. For it to be Vegas Strong, it shouldn't just be Vegas Strong for just when this happened. It doesn't take a tragedy for you to be strong, for the city to come together. We didn't even have a professional team and now we have the Golden Knights. It's so crazy because now I walk to the grocery store or anywhere and everyone has Golden Knights' shirts on and that's awesome, especially the way that they're playing now. They have the chance of actually winning it, winning it big, especially because they have something to represent. It's the city that they're from, the city that they're representing. I just don't think that people should forget.

What can you see your group doing? When I read in the newspaper about the dinner on


Saturday night in Henderson, to make Vegas Strong and allow this love to pour out, what else can your group do?

Right now what we're doing is a Fifty-Eight Random Acts of Kindness. For example, we did our first one. We went to eat for our daughter's birthday. It was her birthday, right?

BJ's, yes.

So we went to go eat for her birthday. Right before we got there, I told him, "Whatever our bill is, we're going to tip that to her, whatever our bill is." So then he said, "Well, hopefully we have good service." Right when he said that I was like, "You jinxed it," because you can't say that. When you go to a restaurant, you cannot say, "Oh, I hope that we have good service," because you're going to have horrible service then. So when we were there, it was like everything that could go wrong with our dinner went wrong.

But us being very patient and relaxed.

Yes, we were really patient. She was so busy. You could tell that they were overworking her. When she brought my steak, the steak looked like it just came off the cow. I was just like, ugh. It was pink and I was just like, "Hey, can we cook it more?" She was like, "Yes." But I could tell that she was just overwhelmed. I was just thinking, oh my God, this is such horrible service, but we're going to make her day.

Good, good.

Honestly it wasn't really...It was just little, tiny things, and what other people—

But one after the other after the other.

Yes. There are some that would probably broadcast it that they're frustrated with the service and try to get something free or whatever. But we're patient.

Yes. I even took a picture of it.


What was the restaurant?

BJ's. Our bill was seventy-nine eighteen, so we tipped her seventy-nine eighteen. So our bill ended up being a hundred and fifty dollars. So then we just put it right there, "In memory of our fifty-eight angels, fifty-eight random acts of kindness." Those are just little things that we're doing, like paying the Starbucks' bill behind us, just little things like that. Everybody is doing just little things, but the thing is when they do it, it's for fifty-eight. It's a little card that we have and each card has the name of the person who passed away and a little bit about them and it just says, "This person passed away on October first. They were smiling. They were full of energy." Anything that was about them. We'll leave it randomly to somebody. It could be a gift card. There was one that he's a landlord and he sent one to his tenants and said, "Two hundred and fifty dollars off of your December rent." Just little things. But the thing is that it shouldn't just be survivors that are doing this; it should be everyone. That's what Vegas Strong should be.

So tell us. The person who wrote the article for the Saturday's event in the newspaper, why don't you tell him so that he can do a piece?

Yes, yes, definitely. We didn't speak to anybody there from the media. We actually have a girl from Las Vegas Review-Journal that's doing a story on us.

Yes, those are just little things. No matter what, you can't take negativity out of people. People are very expressive about their opinions.

Will always be.

Yes. I tend to not want to even read the comments because there's always something that is negative. When all these stories came out yesterday because of the Thanksgiving dinner and then her saying that she feels like we've been forgotten, a lot of people took that against her in just saying, "Oh, how could you feel like that? We're all Vegas Strong. We pray for you guys. You


just want the attention." Just negativity. All I have to say about that is that just understand that if you were in those shoes, it would be a totally different opinion.

Yes. I don't know what you went through. I've heard the story now, of course, because of what I'm doing, a number of times. It is the first time we've talked to someone who was actually wounded. My heart is just open. So what I'd like to do just personally is I want to do fifty-eight acts of kindness.

Oh, that would be awesome.

I'm taking a class at church called Happiness and our goal in the next month is to pass it on, sow it forward or pass it on.

Pay it forward.

Pay it forward, yes. This is the best idea that I've heard of what I'm going to do, so I want to do this.

That's awesome.

I think there will be hundreds and hundreds of other people here in this city who feel the same way that I feel.

Because it feels so good. It could be the littlest thing.

So I have a class of about ten people at church, my Happiness class, I'm sending an E-mail today and I'm telling them that this is what we need to do.

There is an actual E-mail that I have a template. You can cut up with their names and a little bit about them.

Could you please send it to me so I can share that?

Definitely. That way you can cut it up and then every time you leave an act of kindness, you leave that note with the victim's name. I think that's definitely something that should be shared across.


I'm going to start sharing it, yes.

Right now there's so much division, but there's so many good people and so many kind hearts out there.

Oh, yes. Oh, yes.

It's just the little, tiny things. It's crazy when people from my job and stuff, know like what I do at work. To me it's just a part of me, so it's not something I'd be like, oh, yeah, let's shine a light on it. It's just something that just comes naturally. All the blessings I've got, it was so amazing, but, yet, it was so hard because I'm so used to giving and then to receive it, it's such a huge blessing. Now you want to, like you said, repay it forward, just the tiny things of being inspiring for somebody. It's a beautiful thing.

Do you have Facebook? Do you have groups on your Facebook because there's this group and it's called Fifty-eight Acts of Kindness and it has over six thousand members and these are all a people that...It shows their different ideas of what they have done.

Good. I need to go to that Facebook page.

It's called Fifty-eight Random Acts of Kindness.

My last question and then I want us to end on something really positive. Has your idea or your thoughts about gun control changed, pro or con, after the shooting?



How has yours changed?

My dad has been—I was raised anti-gun, so I've always been raised like that. My dad is very against guns. My brother, the moment that he turned eighteen years old, he got a whole load of guns and he loves guns. My dad has always been very against it, and so that's how I was raised.


I saw guns as me being scared of them and not really necessary. Yet, when this all happened, when we were running towards the Tropicana and people were hiding, I kept telling everybody, "Stop hiding because if they find you, you're done." When we were in the Tropicana, people were hiding in rooms and stuff. I was so scared to even hide in a room because I knew that if I hid in one and if they found me, I was done. It's crazy when we were running and they're shooting at me, the first thing that I was thinking about is I wish I had a gun. Because if I was hiding in a room with Billy and I had a gun, too bad for the person who opens that door because I will protect myself instead of me hiding and being scared of, oh my God, what if they find me? Instead of saying, oh, no, I hope they don't find me because then I'm going to have to protect myself. So it's definitely changed my perspective of guns. I just feel like it's not like we were going to shoot at the guy or anything like that, but we were going to protect ourselves and not feel helpless and vulnerable. If a bad guy is going to have a gun, then I want one, too.

Me? I don't know. When I was young I always wanted to be a soldier and this and that. I was always fascinated with that. I was actually in the Army. So with me with weapons, I've never been against weapons, guns or anything like that. Once I got out of the military, I've never owned a gun myself, but now I want one more than ever. I know, what Kimberly said, there was nothing we were going to do to that guy. Obviously, he was on a whole other level with the weapons he had, especially with bump stock. He improvised a weapon to literally make a weapon so much more powerful. But that's the world we live in now. If you want the best thing and you've got the money, you can get it, and if you want to improvise it, it can be done. It's just crazy now because that's what happens with military and whatnot, a lot of the other countries; we modify and we make things a lot better and that's just the way it goes. Now, me, like I said, I want a weapon more than ever, and it's not because—obviously, this situation, we knew we


couldn't do anything about it even if we did—but it's the future situation now. In my mind we've seen these things happen in church. I don't know. Man, that's just crazy. Obviously, the guy in New York getting a car. It's going to come in waves and it's not going to stop. I feel that if this ever was to occur again in a situation where I'm in harm's way, I hope I have one because if I have one then at least I can protect Kimberly, the kids, or, if it comes to it, I can protect somebody else; I can make a difference. But if I don't have it, what difference am I going to make? The life we live in now, when something happens, police are not going to get there immediately. This happens in Wal-Mart all the time now. People are going nuts. People are choosing to just go nuts out of nowhere and the police aren't going to be there to protect you. Who is going to protect you? Yourself if you have it. If you don't have it, what are you going to do? That's what scares me is that if there's a future situation, I want to have a difference maker. You're not going to make a difference if you're not protected.

For example, we were at the Strip and we were walking towards the parking lot and there was a dark alley we had to walk through. I was trying not to let my PTSD get to me and I was just walking towards there. But I just around and I looked at him and I'm like, "I just feel so shitty. I feel really vulnerable. Anybody could come and just hurt us right now." This is a dark alley. And if somebody comes to hurt us, what are we going to do, just tell them, "Okay, do whatever you want with me?" Because they have a gun and we don't. I just felt like that and I was like, "I don't want to feel like that. I don't want to feel like I can't protect myself." It's not like I'm going to go off and start shooting people, no. I'm just going to protect myself; that's it. If I have a gun, I would feel much better. More in my mind is going to be at peace when walking down that alley with a gun than without one.

Do you find that most of the people in your survivors group feel the same way?


Yes, there's many that feel the same way.


There's one or two that have spoken about guns, but it's mainly the same thing. A lot of people are saying, "I wish I had my guns when all that was happening." But that's the thing, we walk into places that don't allow guns.

Exactly. Have you been to another concert since?

We went to the Vegas benefit concert.

The Vegas benefit concert, yes, at the Orleans.

The Vegas Strong Concert. We went there, but we left early so we could avoid the crowd.

My cousin did invite me to Jay-Z, but I was—yes, Kimberly was—

It was too soon. It was too soon for me.

She was like, "I don't want you going." And I'm like, "Okay, if you don't want me to go, I'm not going to go."

Yes. I'm just not ready for that yet.

We did go to—what was it at Town Square? When I was there I was having a lot of problems. McMullen's was it?


Yes, McFadden's.

My sister's birthday.

I was having some issues.

Too many people?

That and I just felt like...I don't know. I just felt like somebody was out to get me.

I think that we should pay more attention to our intuition, anyway. Where is McFadden's?


I go to Town Square often, but I don't know it.

It's over by the Yard House.

Oh, yes, okay. Those places are usually very crowded.

A lot of young people go there.

I was having a hard time there.

I can understand that.

We left because there was this stupid, dumb girl screaming in the middle of the dance floor, but screaming randomly, and I couldn't take it. I was like, "We've got to go." She was just screaming randomly. I was like, "No, we've got to go."

It was just her way of having a good time.

I guess.

Yes. It was a trigger for us.

I just want to thank you so much. I appreciate you taking the time to do this. We plan to use this in a way that we've never used oral history before. We want to put it online. We want to try to help people in other cities.

There's a lot of people that need that, a lot of people.

I appreciate you allowing your group to know about this. Thank you so much.

Danny Cluff, the poet, he wrote this one. This is the one that touched me the most. He says, "Dear Steven Paddock, you ignited my life with flames. You forced us in this darkness without ever knowing our names. I don't know what made you do this. Along with you died your cause. I didn't know your name. I didn't know your flaws. Maybe I seen you in a hotel. Maybe I never seen you not at all. So I don't know what can influence you to answer the devil's call. You placed me in your life. You aimed at me with your scopes. You held down your trigger and shot away my


hopes; my hopes of feeling safety, my hopes of feeling that I am secure. They say that love heals hate. So if I hate you, can I be cured? I hate you for your actions. I hate you for the lives you took. I hate you for every loud sound I hear, for every fearful look. But if I continue to hate you, can I ever be fully healed? Can I ever move on in life if hate is all I feel? So today I'll take a stand. I won't continue to let you win. I won't forget what you have done, but won't dwell upon your sin. For my life you didn't take. So my life I will not give you. So as hard as this is to say, Steven Paddock, I forgive you."


He's amazing.

Yes. That reminds me of the families in South Carolina.

Oh, the church.

Yes. The first thing the families did is they forgave gave so that they could get the weight off their shoulders and then they healed.

It's hard.

Yes, it is.

Especially for the ones who lost someone.

Oh, yes. Wow, this is powerful. I appreciate it so very much.

Thank you so much.

[End of recorded interview]