Mizzou graduate left Las Vegas hours before shooting

Posted on 2 October 2017 at 4:06pm

COLUMBIA - University of Missouri graduate Christyl Thurman says she was "very fortunate" to have gotten out of Las Vegas before the mass shooting that killed more than 50 people.

She spent her Sunday at the Mandalay Bay Resort, where the gunman fired from a 32nd floor window onto a crowd of concert-goers below.

Thurman and her friends spontaneously decided to visit Las Vegas for the weekend. Thurman said where she stayed was so close to the concert area she could, “throw a rock and hit the person on stage.”

Authorities reported 64-year-old man Stephen Paddock fired countless rounds from his room. SWAT found him dead there.

Thurman said her group of friends originally planned to stay at the hotel longer but, at the last minute, chose to go to the airport early. She said she didn’t know the mass shooting happened until her flight landed and she found over forty missed calls and messages from worried loved ones.  

“The first message I saw was my mom saying, ‘I can’t lose you. What’s going on?’ That freaked me out because I honestly had no idea,” Thurman said.

Thurman said she feels very lucky.   

“Your whole world and your whole life goes in front of you. I should have been there. I felt guilty. I felt bad,” she said.