The Las Vegas shooting was one of the deadliest mass shootings in modern history. Look at the list of people who died that day — died for no reason, other than the fact that it was a senseless act. It is painful to hear such news and “the world is a little more cloudy” today, as one, who is grieving the loss of a loved one, has said. Besides the people who died that day, there were also many others who were injured. It was a test for humanity — a chance for people to be courageous and help those around them who needed someone to get them to safety. For one woman, her life was saved thanks to her firefighter boyfriend.
This woman can consider herself to be incredibly lucky. Had it not been for her boyfriend taking immediate action, she wouldn’t be here today to tell her story. Rather, she would be part of that list of people who didn’t make it.
Christina Kitcat was at the country music festival that day with thousands of other people. She was there enjoying the music with her boyfriend Kelly Culbertson. It was the latter’s idea to go to the concert — in fact, the tickets were a birthday present for Kitcat.
When they first heard the sound of gunfire, the couple didn’t immediately realize that this was a scary situation. The two thought it was the sound of fireworks. It was only when Kitcat turned towards her boyfriend to tell him something that things turned dramatically for the worse.
Culbertson recalled the moment he heard the sound of the gunfire. “I’m like why did everyone bring fireworks? Why did everybody disperse?” It was then that Kitcat turned towards him and told him, “It’s hard for me to breathe.”
It was here that Culbertson realized what was actually going on. His girlfriend had been hit by a bullet. The 27-year-old is a trained firefighter and Emergency Medical Technician. As he saw his girlfriend struggling, Culbertson used all of his education and experience to respond to Kitcat’s injury.
The most important thing first was to get Kitcat to safety. And so Culbertson, together with two other firefighters he met at the scene, carried Kitcat away from there. The latter was rushed into a truck that was taking many of the victims to the hospital.
Culbertson believes the man who was driving this truck had actually stolen it. He believes the driver “was US Marine veteran Taylor Winston.” He stole the truck to take the victims to hospital as quickly as possible to safeguard as many lives as they could.
In fact, Kitcat needed open heart surgery. This is because the bullet had gone through her arm. But worse, it had hit “a major coronary artery and her lungs.” This woman didn’t have much time and she was lucky to be one of those to be taken to the hospital so quickly.
Kitcat is lucky to be alive. Even her doctors know that it was a “miracle” that she survived the gunshots. Shrapnel, the man who opened fire at the concert, “left four holes in her heart and holes in her lungs.”
Culbertson may be used to being in scary scenarios but that doesn’t mean it ever gets easier. “We have a saying,” Culbertson explained, “We prepare for the worst but hope for the best. I hoped to never have seen that. Or experienced it. Or even seen the aftermath of it.”
For now, Kitcat is at the hospital recovering from her surgery. This woman has had to experience an unbelievably terrible situation, one that could have cost her her life. Moreover, she has had to spend her 30th birthday at the hospital.
Nobody should have to go through such a horrifying experience. We can say that Kitcat is lucky because she survived but it does feel simplistic to say too. That’s because nobody should be said to be lucky to have survived a shooting.
People should never have to go through something like this and survive it to feel lucky. We shouldn’t go through and we shouldn’t let others go through this either. Sadly, there are more people who, like Kitcat, have had to have surgery and they are now recovering from the mass shooting.