Taylor Winston and his girlfriend, Jen Lewis, were dancing the two-step stage right, at the Route 91 Concert in Las Vegas Sunday night, when the bullets started flying. His Marine training kicked in as the bullets continued to fly past him.
Winston knew he could not fight the threat, but he could drive. He looked around and noticed a number of white trucks parked nearby. He thought, if one of them had the keys in it, he could take injured concert goers to the hospital.
After he found a truck with keys in it, Winston started driving around, looking for injured people. They squeezed into the back seat of the truck and sprawled across the truck’s bed. He drove them to nearby Desert Springs Hospital Medical Center before returning for more wounded.
These were the first wounded to arrive at a hospital, as the ambulances had not yet arrived when Winston drove his first group out of the “war zone.”
MARINE HERO, IN HIS OWN WORDS:
“The shots got louder and louder, closer to us and saw people getting hit, it was like we could be hit at any second. Once we got to the fence, I helped throw a bunch of people over, and got myself over,” Winston said. “It was a mini war zone but we couldn’t fight back.”
“I saw a field with a bunch of white trucks. I tested my luck to see if any of them had keys in it, first one we tried opening had keys sitting right there. I started looking for people to take to the hospital,” Winston said. “There was just too many and it was overwhelming how much blood was everywhere.”
“Once we dropped them off, we were like well, let’s go back for round two and go get some more,” he said. “I transported probably 20 to 30 people injured to the hospital.”
“I think a lot of my training in the military helped me in the situation. We needed to get them out of there regardless of our safety,” Winston, who joined the Marines when he was 17, reflected.
“There were a lot of bravery, and courageous people out there. I’m glad to call them my country folks.”
Winston, 29, saw two tours of duty in the Iraq War and was honorably discharged as a sergeant. He has been called a hero for his actions during and following the Las Vegas concert shooting on Sunday evening.
Winston doesn’t know which ones of his passengers survived, but he knows he made a difference that night.
The next day, Taylor Winston found the truck’s owner and returned the keys to him. There is no word how the owner reacted to seeing the truck bed and white seats of his late model white Ford F-150 covered in blood.