Orlando shooting survivors start to speak out, recounting the horrifying events that saved them and left 49 others dead in a Florida gay bar last Sunday. The most dramatic testimony comes from Patience Carter, who says that she feels so guilty to be alive. Carter paints a dramatic yet very different picture of what President Barack Obama considers the worst mass shooting in U.S. history.
15 JUN: Watch an excerpt of a poem written by a survivor of the Orlando shooting. Patience Carter sought refuge in a bathroom in the Pulse nightclub in the Florida city when a gunman started shooting. Forty-nine people were killed in the attack. The 20-year-old is recovering from a gunshot wound in hospital. For more: bbc.in/survivor #OrlandoNightclubShooting #OrlandoShooting #Orlando #Shooting #LGBT #BBCShorts @BBCNews ????: Getty Images
In all, there were 53 survivors, according to the Wall Street Journal, which writes the following.
“Of 44 patients admitted to the hospital, 27 remain there. Six are in intensive care, five in guarded condition and 16 stable. Though nine patients died early on, none of the remaining ones have succumbed since…The emergency department contended with an initial crush of about 20 to 22 patients, said Chadwick Smith, a trauma surgeon. There was a lull, presumably the period when Mateen was engaged in hours’ long standoff with police. Then doctors received word that another 20 to 25 patients could be on their way.”
Meanwhile, Patience Carter has been quoted by Us Weekly as saying that he saw the gunman, Omar Mateen, make a 911 call from the bathroom of Pulse. The source quoted Carter, one of the Orlando shooting survivors, as saying the following.
“He said the reason why he was doing this is he wanted America to stop bombing his country [Mateen’s parents are from Afghanistan].”
However, from CNN’s point of view, “Mateen called 911 during the attack to pledge allegiance to ISIS and mentioned the Boston Marathon bombers, according to a U.S. official.”
Patience Carter also said that Mateen did not kill her because she was black. She also said that the killer uttered the following words.
“I don’t have a problem with black people. This is about my country. You guys suffered enough.”
Furthermore, according to the Us Weekly report, the shooter made sure that those he had shot earlier on were dead by checking their condition as they lay on the floor of the nightclub. If they appeared to be still breathing, Mateen made sure that they no longer were by shooting them again. It’s a miracle then that there were Orlando shooting survivors at all.
The report also said that it would take a few hours of gun battle before the police managed to take down Omar Mateen.
According to CBC News, people at the Pulse nightclub were starting to leave and saying their goodbyes to each other when Mateen appeared out of nowhere to start shooting at the crowd. Angel Colon, one of the 53 Orlando shooting survivors, was quoted by the source as saying that there were still around 300 people left in the nightclub when the shooter began his rampage.
— People Magazine (@people) June 14, 2016
Angel Colon suffered a lot of bone fractures as a result of being trampled by crowds scrambling to save their lives. He confirmed what other Orlando shooting survivors have said about Mateen making sure that everyone he had shot was dead. Mateen, Colon said, even shot him two more times, just barely missing his head. However, since he pretended to be dead by not reacting, the shooter must have thought that Colon was lifeless.
It must have been so difficult for Colon to play dead while he was being shot at two more times after being initially shot. Yet, as fate would have it, he would be one of the Orlando shooting survivors. The Orlando Hospital ran out of ambulances, so firefighters, the police, and people with vans or trucks had to assist with getting Orlando shooting survivors to receive critical care in an expedient manner.
And to help Orlando shooting survivors, as well as their friends and relatives in coping with grief, comfort dogs have been flown in from Iowa to be with everyone who is overcome with sadness regarding the shocking event that unfolded during the wee hours of June 12, according to CTV News. Surely, it will take some time for everyone to fully recover emotionally from such a horrific incident.
— Fox News (@FoxNews) June 15, 2016
[Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]