Taylor Benge and his sister survived the massacre in Las Vegas Sunday night, where a gunman killed 58 people and wounded 500 more outside a country music festival. The shooter, who eventually killed himself, aimed at the concertgoers from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel. His rampage appears to have been meticulously planned.
Still shaken, Taylor spoke with CNN anchors John Berman and Kate Boduan Monday morning to offer his eyewitness account. The 21-year-old was at the concert when he said he heard what sounded like fireworks. It wasn't until he saw a man next to him bleeding from the head that he realized something was seriously wrong.
At one point, Taylor shared that his sister selflessly through herself on top of him, telling him that she loved him.
Hours later, and Taylor and his sister are miraculously still alive. Through the harrowing experience, the young man says his heart is forever changed.
“You just gotta to take it to God at that point and, you know, hope that you can make it and hope that you’re safe,” Benge continued. “And I know I can't speak for everyone but for me, I’m just, you know, I was agnostic going into that concert and I'm a firm believer in God now because there’s no way that, you know, all that happened and that I made it and I was blessed enough to still be here alive talking to you today.” (Newsbusters)
Taylor's sister's courage on display is added to a long list of acts of kindness that have unfolded in the wake of Sunday's unthinkable tragedy. Off duty police officers stepped in to help people take shelter, strangers helped barricade individuals trying to escape the gunshots, while others waited in line for hours to donate blood.
Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman noted all of the heroism on CNN Monday night, telling Erin Burnett, "I can't tell you how supportive this country has been."