Jake Owen, Chris Young Give Chilling Updates from Backstage at Route 91 Harvest
“Why?” Why is one of the questions Chris Young tweeted after a gunman took aim at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas, NV on Sunday night (10/1), killing more than 50 and injuring more than 400. The gunman, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, allegedly rained down bullets from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay resort while panicked country music fans tried to escape. During his attack, several country stars hunkered down backstage in hopes that their crew, fans and family were safe.
Young took to Twitter to let fans know he was safe, albeit shaken. The “Losing Sleep” singer was trapped on the floor of a trailer while he waited for safety.
“I’m not gonna say anything else other than I’m lucky to be alive. As are many others… and so many people are gone… this is heartbreaking,” he updated fans early in the morning.
Jake Owen was also in Vegas when the shooting occurred. The Florida native had just finished his set before Jason Aldean took the stage for the final headlining slot. Standing side stage, Owen had a first hand glimpse at the devastation as he ran for cover.
Owen first updated fans as to the status of the situation, adding “Pray to god. Love you guys. Love you Pearl.”
In an interview with TODAY, Owen revealed that he took cover behind a police vehicle.
“I was crouched down behind a cop car. There was blood on people and you could see a couple of people in the streets that looked like they had been shot,” he recalled.
The “American Country Love Song” singer went on to thank first responders at the festival for doing everything to could to keep people calm and as safe as possible.
“They did everything they could to get out here quickly as possible and take care of these people,” he told TODAY host Matt Lauer.
While Las Vegas Metro police and the FBI continue to piece together what happened during the shooting, the number of those dead and injured continues to rise. Police have reported that they are confident that there is a lone shooter involved in the incident, Stephen Paddock. Paddock allegedly shot from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Casino, later shooting himself before a SWAT team arrived.
Sheriff Joseph Lombardo announced that multiple firearms were found in Paddock’s room, including more than 10 rifles. He checked into the hotel on Sept. 28 using his roommate, Marilou Danley’s, name. PEOPLE reports that Danley was located outside of the United States and does not seem to have had any involvement in the shooting.
The shooting has become the largest in modern U.S. history.
If you are trying to locate a loved one, police encourage you to call 1-866-535-5654.
**UPDATE: As of 11:30 a.m. CST, there have been at least 58 deaths reported and 515 people injured from the incident.