It seems hard to imagine that the bustling and bright Las Vegas strip could ever be dark and quiet, but that’s the plan for Monday, according to USA Today. Exactly one year ago today, a gunman’s rampage killed 58 people who were on the Strip that day having a good time and celebrating their love of country music. The open-air concert turned into a nightmare when the gunman — Stephen Paddock — started firing into the crowd at random from above.
The marquees along the Strip are scheduled to go dark on Monday at a specific time that evening. The event is one of many planned throughout the city in remembrance of the victims. The shooting was the deadliest in American history, with 58 dead and 400 more wounded by bullets fired from the high-rise hotel room. Many more were injured trying to flee the scene. It was chaotic as the enormous crowd rushed to flee from bullets and the ensuing human stampede.
Country star Jason Aldean was on stage performing at the Route 91 Harvest Festival when the shooting started. Hundreds of fans sang along to the music, dancing as the show wrapped up. Above them, in a room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel, the gunman lay in wait.
“A lot of people have probably put it out of their minds,” said Clark County Commissioner Steve Sisolak, who led a fund drive that raised millions for victims. “The anniversary is going to bring up a lot of feelings, good and bad.”
View this post on Instagram
Over the last 24 hrs I have gone through lots of emotions. Fear, Anger, Heartache, Compassion and many others. I truely dont understand why a person would want to take the life of another. Something has changed in this country and in this world lately that is scary to see. This world is becoming the kind of place i am afraid to raise my children in. At the end of the day we arent Democrats or Republicans, Whites or Blacks, Men or Women. We are all humans and we are all Americans and its time to start acting like it and stand together as ONE! That is the only way we will ever get this Country to be better than it has ever been, but we have a long way to go and we have to start now. My heart aches for the Victims and their families of this Senseless act. I am so sorry for the hurt and pain everyone is feeling right now and there are no words i can say to to take that pain away. Just know u all are in my heart and my prayers as we all go through this together. Time to come together and stop the hate! #stopthehate #prayforlasvegas
Paddock started firing at 10:05 p.m., turning his gun directly on the crowd. He didn’t stop firing for more than 10 minutes as the situation below devolved into screams and panic. People were hit, and panicked concert goers were desperate to take cover or to escape. The gunman fired more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition and was discovered dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound over an hour after shooting stopped.
The FBI is still trying to determine what motive could possibly have been behind the unthinkable crime.
“A lot of the feeling among people is more, ‘Let’s move on,'” community activist Pauline Ng Lee said. “We don’t have a lot of long traditions here. You can see it with buildings. Casinos come up, casinos get knocked down. People tend to look forward, not back.”
A sunrise memorial is set for Monday, and the city also plans for a prayer vigil at City Hall. At 10:01 p.m., the Strip will go dark. At 10:05 p.m., the names of the victims will be read aloud at the Community Healing Garden.