Posted: 5:57 am Wednesday, October 4th, 2017
By Staff Writer
Full Story at PEOPLE Magazine:
Heather Gooze was one of the many having a great time Sunday night with her coworkers as she was bartending at the Harvest Route 91 Festival in Las Vegas, just minutes before it turned into a nightmare for over 20,000 people. But she was one of the many that put fear aside when bullets started flying and tried to do what she could to help.
PEOPLE Magazine got a full account of her night from the first bullet to the end of the night. She told them, “We were having a blast,” she tells PEOPLE. “But then all of a sudden there were people running through the bar and we couldn’t understand why.”
“Everyone was dancing and [Jason Aldean] kept on singing,” says Gooze, 43, of Las Vegas. “Then there were thousands of people running through trying to break the gate down behind my bar. They were literally climbing on top of each other.”
This is when things got even more serious for her…
She was helping left and right with whatever she could, helping the injured and scared when one man came up to her carrying someone who had life-threatening injuries.
“He told me to come over and asked me to hold this guy’s jacket, put my hand on the back of his head and hold as much pressure on it as possible,” she says. “I could literally feel the bullet hole in the back of his head. There was blood everywhere,” she told PEOPLE.
They had gotten him into a car, but she thinks he had already died. She could feel him stop breathing in her arms. Gooze only heard the man’s first name.
Then she saw three men who were carrying a young man on a ladder — something they used along with barricade gates and banners to help get the injured out (according to PEOPLE).
“I reached out and held his hand,” Gooze recounts, tearfully but no one knew who he was or what his name was. Which for her, wasn’t good enough. From that moment on, she did everything in her power to find whoever he came with to that festival. When his phone rang, Gooze and a stranger she was with picked up and learned his name was Jordan McIldoon, and that he was from British Columbia.
“We asked him to help us find names and phone numbers for his family,” she says. “Jordan’s phone was locked but Facebook messages kept on coming up so I went on Facebook to try and find him.”
According to PEOPLE, while she was sending messages to everyone who had his last name, McIldoon’s mom called. The man she was with picked up and she told him that her son was there with his girlfriend, Amber. McIldoon died in Gooze’s arms as they tried to track down Amber to see if she was okay.
They finally got a hold of Amber… “She picked up but was in lockdown at the Tropicana [hotel],” Gooze says.
Heather Gooze then had to be the one to break the news to Amber about her boyfriend.
“I said, ‘I don’t want to be the one to tell you this but he didn’t make it,’” she recounts. But that wasn’t all Gooze did… she then made Amber a promise: She wouldn’t leave McIlldoon’s side until Amber showed up to be with him.
She also called McIldoon’s mother back, and made the same promise to her.
“I wouldn’t leave him or go anywhere until I could make sure that they knew where he was and what was going on,” she recalls. “I’m not a brave or courageous person but something inside of me just wouldn’t let me leave the venue.”
Gooze — who was with McIldoon for four hours — was determined to make sure that he wouldn’t be forgotten.
“I didn’t want him to be a John Doe,” she says.
Here is a video interview with Heather Gooze: Click Here.
Jordan McIldoon, 28
Canadian Jordan McIldoon was a mechanic’s apprentice from Maple Ridge, British Columbia, British Columbia Premier John Horgan said in a statement.
McIldoon’s parents, Al and Angela, confirmed their only child’s death to CBC News. According to them, MIldoon was at the Route 91 Harvest music festival with his girlfriend and was returning home Monday.
“We only had one child,” they told CBC. “We just don’t know what to do.”
Horgan said flags will be flown at half-mast on government buildings in McIldoon’s hometown and at Parliament buildings in British Columbia.