It’s been almost a month since Stephen Paddock opened fire on the crowds at the Route 91 country music festival in Las Vegas, killing 59 and injuring over 500 innocent civilians.
His deplorable actions have left all affected in mourning – many are still in recovery and those who survived are having to come to terms with the horror.
Among them, were Dennis and Lorraine Carver, a couple from California, who both survived the deadliest shooting in modern US history when Dennis threw his body to the floor to shield his wife.
Tragically, a fortnight later, the couple died aged just 52, respectively, when their car crashed into a metal gate and went up in flames.
The pair died together, less than half a mile from their Riverside County home, their 20-year-old eldest daughter Brooke Carver told The Las Vegas Review Journal.
She described how her father couldn’t live without her mum, saying:
That’s just the kind of love they had for each other. Their love was selfless.
After the shooting, they heard from all of the people they cared about most. They were so happy. The last two weeks of their lives were really just spent living in the moment.
We were so relieved when they got out of the shooting alive. But I also think we’ve been given little pieces of them that we would’ve never gotten if the shooting hadn’t happened right before they died.
I swear they were more in love those two weeks than the last 20 years. It’s almost as if they’re frozen in time.
16-year-old Madison Carver added:
We’ve found some peace in knowing that our parents just loved each other so much that they had to go at the same time. They couldn’t live without each other.
Madison was at home when she heard the loud crash and looked outside to see her family car engulfed in flames.
A statement from the Riverside County Fire Department said their vehicle crashed into a metal gate outside their community at 10:50 p.m. on the 20000 block of Avenida De Arboles.
It took firefighters almost an hour to put out the flames.
The two daughters say they plan to honour their parents’ memory by living by their family motto: ‘We do as we do and we be happy.’
In the aftermath of the Las Vegas mass shooting at around 10.30pm on Sunday 1 October, many stories of heroism came to the fore as Americans confronted an unfathomable loss.
One photograph taken amid the chaos, as 64-year-old Stephen Paddock fired endless rounds into the 22,000-strong crowd at the Route 91 Harvest music festival, for 11 minutes from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel, particularly struck a chord and was featured across international media.
The image depicts the moment a man shields a stranger from bullets, and her eyes from the horror:
The young man has now been identified at Matthew Cobos, a young US Army soldier who bravely ran into the danger zone to help others.
He’s understood to have used his belt as a tourniquet to stop people bleeding and even put his finger in bullet holes of some who had been shot.
Getty photographer David Becker, revealed the couple had managed to run away seconds after the photo was snapped.
The FBI investigation into Stephen Paddock’s motive is still underway.
Our thoughts are with all those who have been affected.