Jesus Campos, the Mandalay Bay security officer who police say saved countless lives during the Las Vegas shooting, gave his first public account of the events to Ellen DeGeneres on the comedian’s day-time talk show.
“I’m doing better each day, slowly but surely. Just healing mentally and physically,” he said.
Campos was joined on The Ellen DeGeneres Show by building engineer Stephen Schuck, who were the first people to encounter Stephen Paddock on the night of the mass shooting. The guard recalled how he walked up from the 31st floor to inspect a room left ajar on the 32nd floor, but he couldn’t get past the stairwell door on that level. When he went back to take the elevator, he found a “metal bracket holding the door in place.”
Campos recalled hearing “drilling sounds” before he was shot through the door of the hotel room. “As I was walking down, I heard rapid fire, and at first I took cover,” he said. “I felt a burning sensation. I went to go lift my pant leg up and I saw the blood. That’s when I called it in on my radio that shots had been fired, and I was going to say that I was hit, but I got on my cell just to clear the radio traffic so they could coordinate the rest of the call.”
Schuck had also come to check on the area and he, too, thought there was some kind of construction going on. Campos saved his life when he shouted to take cover. “Within milliseconds if he didn’t say that I would’ve got hit,” Schuck said. “[The bullets] were passing behind my head. I could feel the pressure,” he added.
More than 50 people were killed and over 400 more were injured when Paddock opened fire during Jason Aldean’s set at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Vegas on Oct. 1. “I just want to mention all the people that assisted that night, whether it was metro, the FBI, the community, especially, coming together to help everyone in need, the first responders, even the people that got called in to assist in the hospital,” Campos said. “Everything puts pieces together on how everyone came together to help that night even in the darkest hour.”
The men said they didn’t want any money from DeGeneres, but the host still gave them gifts: Schuck received VIP tickets from the NFL to meet the Indianapolis Colts and Campos received season tickets for when the Oakland Raiders come to Vegas. In addition, Shutterfly donated $25,000 to GoFundMe’s page dedicated to supporting victims of the Vegas shooting.