Flowers, candles and toys are left at a makeshift memorial site on Las Vegas Boulevard on Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017, in Las Vegas. A gunman opened fire on an outdoor music concert on Sunday killing dozens and injuring hundreds. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)
Kelcie Willis, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
Jonathan Smith was in Las Vegas celebrating his brother’s 43rd birthday when a gunman shot into crowds on Sunday at the Route 91 Harvest Country Music Festival in Las Vegas. He immediately thought to save others and was shot in the process.
The Washington Post reported that Smith’s brother, Louis Rust, is a country music fan and had attended the festival in the past. This year, Jason Aldean was headlining.
The two were there with eight other family members, including three nieces, ages 22, 18 and 17 year.
When gunshots began, Smith, 30, told The Washington Post he thought they were fireworks, but soon after, Aldean looked at his security team and ran off stage. The music stopped and the lights went out.
Smith’s nieces were his priority, but they got separated as the crowd began to stampede. Smith started shouting, “Active shooter, active shooter, let’s go! We have to run,” grabbing people near him. Some were hiding behind a patrol car and others were standing still with fear. He told them to follow him as he walked away from the shooting and toward a row of vehicles, which they crouched behind.
“I got a few people out of there,” Smith, who lives in Orange County, California, told The Washington Post from Sunrise Hospital & Medical Center in Las Vegas. “You could hear the shots. It sounded like it was coming from all over Las Vegas Boulevard.”
Smith was shot when he tried to get some young girls closer to proper coverage from the bullets.
“I couldn’t feel anything in my neck,” the father of three told The Washington Post. “There was a warm sensation in my arm.”