It sounded like fireworks.
Renee Cesario was enjoying a night of dancing with Marine, Brendan Kelly, when gunfire rang out into the night. After a moment’s hesitation, 40,000 people attending the Route 91 Harvest Festival panicked when it became clear their lives were in danger. In the midst of the chaos, Brendan Kelley could only think about getting Renee to safety.
“[The gunfire] stopped, and Jason Aldean kept playing but then the shots fired again and he ran off the stage. Before I knew what was going on, Brendan tackled me down to the ground and covered me from the fire.”
Brendan whispered in her hear: “We have to get out of here. We can’t stay here. It’s not safe.”
In the tense moments that followed, Brendan got Renee to her feet and began moving through the crowd.
“We had no idea who was dead or who was alive. We just started to run. He kept telling me it was going to be okay and to keep running until we were safe,” recalled the Renee in a Facebook post.
Brendan managed to take Renee to safety and refused to leave her side until family was able to retrieve her. He gave Renee his phone so she could contact her sister who did her best to thank the young Marine for his actions.
Many are calling for Renee to marry the young Marine in light of his bravery – they are in Vegas after all – but both Renee and Brendan want the victims and their families to get the attention.
The shooting at the Route 91 Harvest Festival is the deadliest in the history of America. Though evil deeds were done that day, we choose to honor the heroism and bravery that Brendan and countless others showed that day. In the midst of this tragedy, we will be brought closer together… just remember to show some love today.
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