From my notes: “Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Officer Charleston Hartfield was shot and killed during the Las Vegas mass-shooting. Hartfield was a military veteran, a youth football coach and recently published author.”
Off duty, Las Vegas firefighter Ben Kole was enjoying the Sunday evening concert. He knew his daughter Rachel was working as an EMT in the arena.
Then a gunman opened fire on concertgoers and he raced through the chaos to find her.
“It was absolutely the worst feeling. My gut just dropped. We embraced, shed a few tears, [then] she said, ‘People need help,’ I said, ‘Okay,’ and we said, ‘Let’s get to work.’ I said, ‘You are on my hip, let’s go.'”
The father-daughter team started treating everyone they could. Kole remembers how helpless he felt at the time.
“People were screaming, there were some head shots over there, and unfortunately, there’s not much you can do for that. It’s horrible for me. One hundred times worse for them.”
Rachel recalls,”There was a woman laying on the floor and there was a man crouched by her and I asked if they needed medical attention. He just waved me off. The fact that he could be so selfless and know that there are others in need as well.”
She also speaks of her father’s leadership, “When you close your eyes at night, and you see all the lights and all the people, that’s something you can’t run from. I don’t see him shaking to the core. I see him when everything was in chaos pulling together, giving instructions, not breaking down.”
“I’m glad my daughter says it didn’t strike me to my core,” Kole interrupted. “It did. This hit me hard.”
Rachel admits that they’re both seeking help, “Our counselor told us something really amazing. She said, ‘If you let this fear change your life, then he’s taking another victim.'”