THE WOODLANDS, Texas- One minute Marlena Hedine and her girlfriends are enjoying Jason Aldean, the next they’re ducking gunfire.
“You just don’t ever prepare for anything like that,” said this mother of two from The Woodlands.
She said she had no time to think once she realized the noises she heard minutes into Aldean’s show in Las Vegas were not fireworks.
“When you’re really there and you’re just like, ‘Is this really happening to me?’ you’re almost in disbelief,” she said. “You’re like wow. You sit there and you think this isn’t really happening. This isn’t really happening.”
She made a run for it once she heard the gunshots pause briefly.
“I just ran underneath the stage,” said Hedine. “I knew it was concrete and it would be safest place around me. People were shot around me just laying there crying and I called my dad as soon I was down.”
Soon first responders ushered her and thousands of others to the Hooters Casino on the strip where she saw paramedics treating the wounded.
“I think whenever you have an experience like that, whatever you care about the most is probably going to come to your mind,” Hedine said. “That’s what happened for me.”
In her case, she meant her 5 and 8-year-old daughters.
“The first thing I remember is laying there thinking I don’t want to die. I don’t want my little girls to lose their mommy,” she said.
Hedine said she’d flown into Las Vegas specifically for the music festival to meet friends. She went Friday and Saturday in addition to Sunday.
She said she believes it’s going to take time to recover from this.
“It’s traumatizing to be a part of this–to watch people being shot around you and being helpless,” she said.
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