September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.  Read and share stories to honor survivors whose loved ones died by gun suicide.

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My wife was shot right in front of me at the Route 91 Festival in Las Vegas. She’s alive and mostly well; different though, to say the least. I go back over it often, thinking what I could’ve done differently.

I did everything right immediately after. I was a soldier. I knew it was automatic weapon fire and got us moving. The guy behind us was dead already. I started yelling “take cover” and hustled her over the sound booth crowd wall and around the downrange side by the stairs. I helped my wife and a girl in her 20s who’d been shot through the shoulder, terrified she was going to die on that pavement. It was a bloodbath under there. My shirt went to some wound, my belt went somewhere for a tourniquet.

What sticks with me, though, is the conversation I had with this girl. She kept saying “You have to get me out of here. I’m gonna die here.” I told her, “We have to wait, they’re going to kill him.” Eww. Shame on me. Even under that strain I knew exactly what was happening. How? We let this happen. That’s what I could’ve done differently.

Reacting shows support for gun violence survivors.