When the residents of Las Vegas learned of the shooting—the deadliest mass shooting in American history—they stepped up to help. In the early morning, people began contributing water, food, blankets, money, and blood, reported the New York Times.
At daybreak, the liens at blood banks already streamed up the block. At the Thomas & Mack Center, which is near the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino where the shooting happened, bottled beverages, food, and other supplies covered tables and were stacked on the floor.
People responded to a shooting by Stephen Paddock. Paddock fired into the crowd at an outdoor music festival. As 20,000 people scattered, at least 58 people were killed and more than 500 injured.
The Times interviewed Jarrett Peper, who works as a receptionist at the Thomas & Mack. When she arrived at work just before 8 a.m., there were already supplies for people who had taken shelter there.
“It was packed,” said Peper. “All morning, blankets, food and water, all kinds of people coming up to help.”
She continued, “It’s incredible, absolutely incredible…When there is a tragedy like that, everybody cares and it brings everybody together.”
A quick look at social media revealed the widespread nature of the response. People posted pictures of blood donation sites around the area. At one center, the line stretched back three blocks, says NYTimes.
A spokeswoman for United Blood Services also shared that some donors were in line as early as 2 a.m. They waited there until the center opened at 7 a.m.
“Many of them stayed, and have already donated, and are now volunteering and passing out water to others in line,” Scott told the NYTimes.
People have also donated money. Steve Sisolak, the Clark County Commission chairman from Las Vegas, started a GoFundMe. By 5:30 p.m. ET, it had raised more than $1.1 million.
So how can you help if you don’t live in the area? Pray for those directly impacted, pray for an end to this violence, and donate if you are able.
Do you know of other ways to help? Let us know in the comments. A victim of the shooting says it helped him with his faith life and turned him toward God.