Country singer Jake Owen has opened up about the carnage he witnessed after a gunman opened fire at music festival Route 91 Harvest in Las Vegas.
The musician, who was part of the line-up, was standing on the side of the stage watching the end of Jason Aldean’s headlining set on Sunday night when Stephen Paddock committed one of the worst mass shootings in recent US history.
He told NBC: ‘I had just walked up on the stage with a couple friends of mine, including Luke Combs, another artist who had played earlier, and we were literally standing 50 feet away from where Jason was on stage.
‘All of a sudden, you heard what sounded – like, “Was that gunfire?” – and it got faster and faster, almost like it was an automatic rifle. You could hear it ringing off the rafters off the top of the stage. That’s when you saw people fleeing. At that point, everyone onstage just started running everywhere possible.’
Over 50 people have been killed and more than 400 have been injured after 64-year-old Paddock opened fire from the 32nd floor balcony of the Mandalay Bay Hotel towards the open-air music festival, which was attended by 22,000 fans.
Owen added: ‘I ran like everyone else. At one point, I was crouched down behind a cop car with about 20 other people that had come to the show, and everyone’s asking if everyone’s okay. There’s blood on people, and you could see a couple folks on the street that looked like they’d been shot lying there. It was chaotic. It was literally like a movie.’
He claimed the shooting went on for around 10 minutes describing the scene as ‘chaos’.
Owen said: ‘We come out to these concerts because that’s what life’s about. We live this life without being scared, but this is reality these days.’
Andean, who was headlining along with Sam Hunt and Eric Church, wrote on Instagram afterwards: ‘Tonight has been beyond horrific. I still dont know what to say but wanted to let everyone know that Me and my Crew are safe.
‘My Thoughts and prayers go out to everyone involved tonight. It hurts my heart that this would happen to anyone who was just coming out to enjoy what should have been a fun night. #heartbroken #stopthehate.’
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