Mandalay Bay in the Aftermath of Horror
Horror came to a peaceful gathering of approximately 22,000 individuals as the sky rained down bullets on them from the 32nd floor of a very well-known casino in Las Vegas. Mandalay Bay played host to a country music festival on October 1st 2017. With a great lineup and tranquil weather patrons never would have thought the sounds music would be eclipsed by sounds of automatic gun fire. Stephen Paddock gained instant worldwide fame as he carried out his own personal holocaust. This day would be indelibly written on the psyches of millions.
Unknown to those on Spirit flight 695 approaching McCarran Airport carnage was occurring less than a mile down the road. My fellow passengers and I received our first inkling of the events unfolding that evening when our cell phones finally caught signals on the ground. Thankfully Spirit and their great staff kept us on the tarmac for 90 minutes as the first responders finalized it was safe to disembark the plane. No one at the time knew how many shooters were participating in the slaughter. Courage and bravery abounded everywhere sometimes from the most unlikely sources.
Once the extent of the evil was known a tide of emotion overwhelmed the faces of those you passed on the streets and vestibules in hotels. An astounding quiet pervaded the areas immediately around the death scene overshadowing the immense building in the background. First responders may have saved thousands. Left to his own devices Stephen Paddock would have continued his reign of terror to an nth point only God could conceive. Fortunately those who moved on this beast did it quickly and effectively.
The death toll stands a 59 at this writing with more than 500 injured. Makeshift memorials have been established throughout the city. One of note, not far the death scene, displays a series of white crosses inscribed with the names of each victim and statements of regret. As we walked through this area a palpable sorrow and a state of mournfulness was ever present amongst the observers paying their respects. Sadly the media finds the killer more important than the victims.
Extensive investigations are now underway to uncover the basis for this horror. Stephen Paddock was a misanthrope, no doubt. Yet his extreme actions take a leap no rational mind could envision. When the history of this event is finally penned let us pray no one tries to outdo this maniac. May God rest the souls of these individuals and settle the minds of those left behind.
Mark Davis MD