Austin performer mistook Vegas gunshots for 'fireworks' until struck by shrapnel

Carlos Sosa is a saxophonist with the Josh Abbott Band who had performed earlier in the evening.

Carlos Sosa had already finished playing for the night, and was catching up with fellow musicians when terror struck.

“We heard popping, really high-pitched, like fireworks. So somebody said 'Oh - there's fireworks.' So I looked up into the sky, and I didn't see anything, and I just disregarded it,” explained Carlos Sosa, who was performing with the Josh Abbott Band at Sunday’s Route 91 Festival.

When the popping noises repeated, he realized something was wrong.

“I felt the hit on the side - whatever it was, and I could see little piece of grass, like flying,” said Sosa, who was struck by shrapnel by one of hundreds of bullets flying through the air.

During the chaos, he didn’t realize the suspected gunman, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, was firing from above.

“One of the security guards screamed and starting tackling people and telling them everybody get down,” said Sosa.

Amidst the hysteria, they were rushed to the area behind their tour buses.

“People were screaming for tourniquets, and belts, and handkerchiefs and stuff,” Sosa said.

In total, Sosa said the mass shooting and ensuing panic lasted about 20 minutes.

RELATED:

Las Vegas shooting: At least 59 killed, over 500 others injured
Victims identified in Las Vegas shooting
Who is Stephen Paddock?
'My heart dropped': Georgetown dad says daughters managed to escape Las Vegas concert
Cedar Park woman will bear 'physical, emotional scars' after Las Vegas shooting
APD increasing presence at ACL Fest, but want attendees to know 'escape route'

“It was probably about 10 minutes in that I really- it really sunk in that somebody was shooting. And it was more confusion backstage,” explained Sosa.

Sosa was touring with the Zac Brown Band during the Paris terror attacks, and said the band beefed up security measures in response. While he's still processing the horror of Sunday night's attack, it won't keep him from the stage.

“I will still go up there and do it... because I love it,” said Sosa.

Sosa said he is physically okay, and thankful for the outpouring of support he’s received.

© 2017 KVUE-TV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment