A nurse from Tennessee, a teacher from California and 56 other people have been killed in Las Vegas. Their destinies move the US.
There is just much talk about the man who killed 58 people in Las Vegas. About Stephen Paddock and the motifs that probably moved him to his action. But bit by bit, information about the people he has taken out of his life with his deed is also known. And about their relatives who are just starting to understand their loss.
“Children without parents, fathers without sons, mothers without daughters”, that is the result of the massacre in his hometown, explained US entertainer Jimmy Kimmel with tears in his broadcast.
Sonny Melton from Tennessee visited the festival to celebrate his first wedding anniversary with his wife. Now Heather Melton is a widow, and that she still lives, she owed her husband, she told the broadcaster WSMV. “He saved my life, he grabbed me and ran, then I felt a shot hit him.” She wanted all the world to know “what kind-hearted, loving man he was – but I can barely breathe at the moment.”
The 29-year-old was a nurse. One of his former professors at Union University, where he had his bachelor’s degree in 2015, told CNN: “You know how it is when you meet someone and just know that you’re a good person Sonny. ”
Sonny Melton was only 29. He worked the emergency room and ICU at Henry County Medical Center. Wife Heather says: “He is a nurturing person” pic.twitter.com/IBLa3v4Hx2
— Forrest Sanders (@WSMV_Forrest) October 2, 2017
Jenny Parks was a teacher in California. The festival in Las Vegas visited her with her husband Bobby. Both were hit by shots. While he was seriously injured in the hospital, no one could help her. “They were high school sweethearts,” one of the people told People magazine. Jenny Parks had been a high-minded, cheerful person. Lastly, she had organized the celebration of Bobby’s 40th birthday with great love, “she had rented a cottage at a lake, she wanted to go boating and do everything possible.”
Just a few months ago, Jenny Parks had completed a master’s degree in educational sciences, the relative continued. Her older son, Bryce, had just started high school, the younger daughter Lea was in elementary school.
— ABC 13 News – WSET (@ABC13News) October 2, 2017
There were many couples at the festival in Las Vegas, many families who are now destroyed. Denise Burditus did not survive the shots. “It makes me sad to say that I lost my wife this evening in Las Vegas, with whom I was 32 years old, the mother of two children, she would soon become a grandmother for the fifth time,” wrote Tony Burditus Facebook Page: “Denise has died in my arms. I LOVE YOU”. Denise Burditus herself had posted a Selfie with her husband just a few hours before her death. One of her last photos showed in the background the Mandalay Bay Hotel.
Even the 34-year-old Charleston Hartfield had posted pictures of the festival before the assassination. He was a cop in Las Vegas and spent his free day at the concert. A friend from his time with the military told the Las Vegas Review journal that he had sent Hartfield on the phone on Sunday evening. When no answer had come, “I thought he was definitely busy helping others,” said Troy Rhett. Hartfield had recently published a book with memories of the time in the US Army, and was among other things active as a football coach for young people. He leaves behind a woman and two children.
Charleston Hartfield, 34, was an off-duty Las Vegas police officer, youth football coach, and military veteran.
Our deepest condolences to his family and friends. R.I.P ???????? pic.twitter.com/7Jstw8E4EI
— Military Support (@MilitaryEarth) October 3, 2017
Carrie Barnette from Riverside, California, was just 34 years old, just like Hartfield. For eleven years she worked in Disneyland and “loved it there”, told her mother the Los Angeles Times. The mother learned on the phone from a friend of her daughter that Carrie had been hit by a bullet.
54-year-old Thomas Day Jr. traveled with his four adult children at the Route 91 Harvest Festival. He also came from the California Riverside, where he worked on the construction. “He was the best dad, so his children were with him,” says his own father, Thomas Day Sr. Now he mourns with the grandchildren.
Hundreds of injured, at least a dozen in critical condition
The US media is gathering these and other stories of the victims of Las Vegas, such as the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, or CNN. The number of deaths could rise. A spokeswoman at the University Hospital of Las Vegas said at least a dozen people were in critical condition. A total of 527 people were injured on Sunday evening. According to the Foreign Office, a German should also be in medical treatment.
While they are catered for in hospitals, the old discussion of stricter laws is being re-ignited as after the last devastating crimes with firearms. But many already assume that this time again will not change in the US.
“Children Without Parents, Fathers Without Sons, Mothers Without Daughters”