When gunshots rang out Sunday at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas, Sonny Melton reacted swiftly.
“He grabbed me and started running when I felt him get shot in the back,” said his wife, Dr. Heather Gulish Melton. “He saved my life and lost his.”
Sonny Melton, 29, was a registered nurse who worked at the same West Tennessee hospital as his wife. The couple had gone to Las Vegas to celebrate their first anniversary.
“I want everyone to know what a kind-hearted, loving man he was, but at this point, I can barely breathe,” Heather Melton told WZTV.
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A man shooting at a Jason Aldean concert from a 32nd-story room at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino killed at least 58 people and wounded at least 515 late Sunday night in the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history. The gunman, identified as Stephen Paddock, 64, killed himself as police stormed his hotel room. Authorities said he had at least 10 rifles in the hotel room.
Sonny Melton worked at Henry County Medical Center in Paris, Tenn., where his wife practices as an orthopedic surgeon.
“The thoughts and prayers of the entire HCMC family are with Sonny and Heather’s families,” said Thomas Gee, the medical center CEO. “We ask that all staff, friends, and patients of the couple respect their privacy at this time and refrain from contacting the family and the HCMC Kelley Clinic if they do not have a reason to do so.”
Gee said Sonny Melton had been preparing to become a surgical nurse in order to work more closely with his wife. “He was a very helping person who was well-liked by everyone,” Gee said. “Just a real tragedy.”
Union University, where Sonny Melton graduated in 2015, posted to Facebook on his death.
“You know how when you met someone and you just know that they’re good and kind? That was Sonny,” said Christy Davis, assistant professor of nursing, in the post. “He just had a sweet, kind spirit about him.”