Heroes of The Aurora Massacre Helped Save Girlfriends, Best Friend, Mother and Children
As we learn more about the Aurora shootings, stories of the heroic acts that took place on the tragic Friday night are beginning to emerge.
Four men murdered in the tragedy — Jon Blunk, Matt McQuinn, Alex Teves and John Larimer — all died while shielding their girlfriends.
According to Jansen Young, when Holmes started shooting, her boyfriend Blunk threw her to the floor and began pushing her under the seat. She noticed he had stopped, but didn’t realize he had been killed.
Speaking to The Denver Post, she said:
I guess I didn't really know he had passed, up until I started shaking him and saying, 'Jon, Jon, we have to go. ... It's time for us to get out of here.
Samantha Yowler’s brother and her boyfriend McQuinn also shielded her during the shooting. She suffered a bullet wound to the leg, her brother was uninjured, but her boyfriend died after being shot three times.
Teves was also shot and killed while shielding his girlfriend Amanda Lindgren.
Lindgren told ABC News:
I was really, really confused at first about what was going on, so confused. … But, it's like Alex didn't even hesitate. Because I sat there for a minute, not knowing what was going on, and he held me down and he covered my head and he said, 'Shh. Stay down. It's ok. Shh just stay down.' So I did.
In a statement handed to reporters, Julie Vojtsek stated that when the shooting began, her boyfriend Larimer, “immediately and instinctively covered me and brought me to the ground in order to protect me from any danger. Moments later, John knowingly shielded me from a spray of gunshots. It was then I believe John was hit with a bullet that would have very possibly struck me. I feel very strongly I was saved by John and his ultimate kindness.”
Fortunately, some heroes who put their lives on the line to help others made it out of the theater alive.
When blood began spurting out of Allie Young’s neck after being shot, her best friend Stephanie Davies immediately began applying pressure to her neck, despite Young urging her to flee. Davies eventually carried Young across two parking lots to an ambulance. President Obama told this story Sunday after meeting with victims of the Aurora shooting and their families at the University of Colorado Hospital.
Obama said, "Because of Stephanie's timely actions, I just had a conversation with Allie downstairs, and she is going to be fine."
After seeing a woman and her two children struggling to get out of the theater, Colorado teenager Jarell Brooks quickly tried to help.
Brooks told ABC News:
At the end of the aisle, I ran into a woman. She yelled, 'My kids!' and I saw she had two young kids with her. I made sure they got in the aisle and pushed behind her to make sure she got out of there.
Both Brooks and the woman, Patricia Legarreta, were then shot. They are both currently recovering from injuries. The children were unharmed.
It is after hearing these stories of people instinctively helping others, while putting themselves in harms way, that we are reminded of the depth of our care for one another.
Legarreta said to ABC News:
It makes me feel glad because I felt helpless. Everybody at that moment was going through it, and to know that someone had that mindset, it makes me feel happy to know that in times of trial, there are good people out there.