New Jersey woman shot in Las Vegas massacre, but survives
LAS VEGAS — A Jamesburg woman is among the 527 people who were injured in Sunday's shooting at a country music festival.
Jenna DeCandio was at the concert with her parents and sister Jill, according to a post on Facebook by Jill Pasternak DeCandio, and was shot in the hip and pelvis. She had surgery at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center, which in a statement said it treated 180 people. Fourteen of those patients died.
"The nurse said the bullet missed her stomach, bowels, intestine, vital organs and arteries and for that we are truly thankful," Jill Pasternak DeCandio wrote.
Shawn Rawl, a former Bayvlille resident, told New Jersey 101.5's Steve Trevelise he was in the front row of the concert in an open-air plaza. At first he thought the sound of gunfire was firecrackers or static from the speakers.
"But then I put two and two together and I was waving the band offstage and saying, 'Go! Go! I know what this is,'" Rawl said.
He pulled people over a barricade surrounding the concert, as the shots rained down on the crowd of 22,000 and everyone ran for cover.
He said the values he learned from his father growing up in Bayville kicked in.
"My mindset was to help people," Rawl said. "I wasn't worrying about myself."
An Edgewater man told News 12 New Jersey he was locked inside the Mandalay Bay Hotel in the hours after the shooting, as police and SWAT teams swarmed the hotel.
"Is somebody going to come and do harm to us?" he recalled thinking.
Stephanie DiBartolomeo of Glassboro told NBC Philadelphia she was in the crowd when the shots started. She said the stage went dark and then everyone stared screaming, dropping to the ground or running. DiBartolomeo and her family hid under a bar. She considers herself lucky to have survived.
"Somebody was watching over us. I've never felt so lucky in my life to be safe and to be here," she said.
Were you, a friend, or a loved one in Las Vegas during the shooting? Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com.