Revelstoke women escape mass shooting

Five women from Revelstoke and Vernon were at the music festival in Las Vegas when a man opened fire

Shaken and holding each other for comfort, five B.C. women are reeling this morning as they relive the experience of being under fire at a Las Vegas musical festival where at least 50 people were killed.

“It was surreal, I remember walking through the casinos after and people were gambling and laughing and having a great time because they didn’t know,” said Tiffany Beerling.

“I’ve never heard gunfire like that before in my life.”

Beerling, Amanda Quinlan, Dawn and Bobbi Doebert of Revelstoke, along with Tara Reiner from near Vernon arrived in Las Vegas on Friday for the three-day Route 91 Harvest Festival.

“There were so many stars we wanted to see,” said Beerling.

Country music musician Jason Aldean was performing Sunday night when the gunman opened fire across the street from inside the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino.

Related: 58 killed in mass shooting in Las Vegas

“We were listening to the music when I heard what sounded like a few fire crackers,” said Beerling.

“Then it was a different sound, the popping of the gun, we were in shock, at first we kept partying, we thought it was fireworks, we didn’t know what was happening.”

Beerling said she realized something was wrong when a man they had met during the festival yelled out that they all needed to “get down.”

“We all got down in a big group, huddled together, on top of each other, everything we could do to get as low as we could. He tried to keep us calm, he wouldn’t let us move until the shots stopped,” said Beerling. “But, they didn’t stop, they just kept going and going.”

The group decided at that moment they had to go, they need to try to run to safety.

In the chaos they got separated.

“Three of us stayed together, Dawn, myself and Tara. We stayed close, we just ran. People were screaming,” said Beerling.

“We could still hear the shots, the shots were going, they went on for what felt like forever. It felt like it never stopped. People were screaming and running in different directions.”

Beerling saw people climbing fences, knocking over barriers, anything they could to escape.

Reiner said she saw blood everywhere and men carrying some injured women away. She saw a shooting victim lying on the ground.

Related: B.C. man one of two Canadians killed in Las Vegas shooting

Bobbi Doeber and Amanda Quinlan were separated from the group and spent time hiding under a car. They were taken in by a Las Vegas family near the airport who kept them safe until they were reunited with the group

“When they came back they had scratches all over them from trees and cars and bruises on them. They hid under a car for a very long time.”

Beerling’s group found an American woman who was working the festival. She was scared and lost and they took her with them back to the hotel room, she was still with them Monday morning.

Amidst the tragedy, Beerling said there were moments of humanity.

“It was amazing, random people saw us walking, saw us crying and asked if we were OK, made sure we could get to safety. People were helping people they did not know, making sure random people were ok,” said Beerling through tears.

She said the group is nervous to fly today, but want to get home to their families. They are set to leave Las Vegas at 1 p.m. and arrive home Monday evening.

As of 9 a.m. authorities said a gunman perched on the 32nd floor unleashed a hail of bullets on an outdoor country music festival below, killing at least 58 people and injuring more than 500.

It was the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.


@carmenweld
carmen.weld@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 18 COVID-19 cases, highest daily count since July

The total of COVID-19 cases in the region is now at 662

A Kelowna clinic decided to immunize their patients in a drive-thru flu clinic earlier this month. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Interior Health anticipates increase in flu vaccinations this season

Some 300,000 doses of flu vaccine ready for distribution across Southern Interior

Zuzana Riha’s last exhibition at the Revelstoke Visual Arts Centre was in October 2018. She has another coming up in November 2020. (Jocelyn Doll/Revelstoke Review)
Revelstoke gallery exhibition opening coming Nov. 5

The November show will feature Zuzana Riha in the main gallery

Snowfall in the Okanagan shatters records. (Contributed)
Snowfall in Okanagan breaks records dated back to 1899

Penticton has received over 10 cm today, surpassing the 8 cm record set in 1957

A map of the proposed location for the temporary workforce camp in Johnson Heights that is subject to a Temporary Use Permit from the city. (City of Revelstoke)
Resort asks for support on proposed temporary workforce housing

Peter Nielsen says application for permanent staff accommodation coming forward next week

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Thanks to efforts by a Kelowna shelter and Elections BC, anyone who wishes to can vote in the 2020 BC Provincial Election, even if they don’t have a fixed address. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
Kelowna group ensures people experiencing homelessness can vote

Shelter supervisor says voting ‘a fundamental right’ even for those without a fixed address

(Big White Ski Resort photo)
Big White receives 21 cm of snow in 24 hours

Resort’s snow base 41 cm deep, one month until opening day

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The deer were allegedly shot within Princeton town limits, late at night. Black Press File Photo.
Armed man, in full camouflage, allegedly shoots deer in downtown Princeton

‘The list of charges goes on and on,’ said RCMP Sgt. Rob Hughes

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Chastity Davis-Alphonse took the time to vote on Oct. 21. B.C’s general Election Day is Saturday, Oct. 24. (Chastity Davis-Alphonse Facebook photo)
B.C. reconciliation advocate encourages Indigenous women to vote in provincial election

Through the power of voice and education Chastity Davis-Alphonse is hopeful for change

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

Most Read