Accident – Death – Obituary News : **University of Nevada, Las Vegas Senior Describes Terrifying Moments During Campus Shooting**
In a shocking turn of events, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) was rocked by a mass shooting on Wednesday, leaving three faculty members dead and another injured. The incident took place at Beam Hall, where students and professors were going about their day before chaos erupted.
Mike Henderson, a senior at UNLV, had just left his classroom in Beam Hall when he heard the sound of gunshots echoing through the hallway. The severity of the situation became evident when an alert flashed on his phone from the university, instructing students to “run, hide, fight.”
“It was real,” Henderson said, reflecting on the moment he received the alert. Immediately seeking safety, he entered a nearby classroom on the second floor and joined others in implementing the shelter-in-place protocol. As the lights were turned off and everyone remained quiet, a sense of fear and nervousness gripped the room.
To ensure their safety, Henderson and his fellow students and professor barricaded the classroom door using desks, desperately hoping that the shooter wouldn’t realize anyone was inside. The tension in the room was palpable as they anxiously awaited help.
During this terrifying ordeal, Henderson reached out to his father, wanting to hear his voice one last time if the worst were to happen. Other students, overwhelmed with panic and tears, also dialed their parents’ numbers, seeking solace in their loved ones during this harrowing experience.
“I lost my mom a few years ago, so my dad is like my lifeline. Just saying goodbye to him was tough,” Henderson recalled, highlighting the emotional toll the situation took on him.
Tragically, three faculty members lost their lives in the shooting. The victims have been identified as 64-year-old Cha Jan Chang, a respected professor, and 39-year-old Patricia Navarro Velez, an assistant professor, according to the Clark County coroner. The shootings took place on different floors of the business school building, leading law enforcement to believe that the suspect deliberately targeted his victims as he carried out his rampage.
The swift response of UNLV police is commendable, with the first officer arriving at the scene a mere 1 minute and 18 seconds after receiving the distress call. As the suspect made his way through the building, he encountered two UNLV police detectives outside the business building, near the student union. A gunfight ensued, resulting in the suspect’s demise.
After approximately 25 minutes of being barricaded in the classroom, police finally arrived at Henderson’s door and evacuated them from the building. As they made their way outside, more shots rang out from the student union building. Henderson witnessed a chilling sight—a lifeless body lying face-down on the ground, its presence a stark reminder of the tragedy that had unfolded.
Brayden McDermott, a first-year student at UNLV who was also present in Beam Hall during the incident, shared his harrowing experience. It all began with an alarm going off, causing confusion among the students, particularly the first-years who were unfamiliar with the sound. Suddenly, a piercing scream shattered the air, alerting everyone to the presence of a gun.
Panic ensued as students sprinted in the opposite direction, attempting to escape the danger. McDermott narrowly avoided being trampled, witnessing the chaos and terror that unfolded around him. Although he didn’t personally hear gunshots, the knowledge that a firearm was present propelled him to flee the building.
“I was terrified. My lungs were burning, and I was panicking,” McDermott said, describing the intensity of his emotions during the incident. Alongside hundreds of other students, he found shelter at the Thomas and Mack Center, where they waited for nearly eight hours until the dormitories were deemed safe.
Reflecting on the tragedy, McDermott expressed a grim acceptance of the current state of mass shootings in the United States. He lamented the desensitization and lack of concern that society has developed towards such incidents, emphasizing the need for change.
“This has happened so much. People don’t care anymore, and that is a shame,” McDermott said, highlighting the unfortunate reality that no place seems to be untouchable in the face of such violence.
The UNLV community is now left grappling with the aftermath of this horrific event, mourning the loss of beloved faculty members and grappling with the trauma inflicted on students. As investigations continue, the focus remains on providing support and healing for those affected by this tragic day in the heart of Las Vegas..