THOUSAND OAKS — Emotions were raw as Kathleen McCann and her friends grieved for two other friends who they say were more like family.
“The door girl, Kristina, and one of the security guards, Tel,” McCann said. “They were both amazing people and we want everybody to just hug each other really close tonight and we can’t believe that they’re gone.”
Candles were lifted up by thousands Thursday at a vigil to honor who is now missing from the heartbroken community.
McCann’s friends were employees at the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, where they lost their lives. They were on duty as the gunman investigators have identified as Ian David Long opened fire inside, killing 12 people before killing himself.
Taylor Von Molt was also on duty, dancing on stage as a promoter when she saw a figure dressed in black approaching.
“I thought I heard balloons popping and after the third one I turned around and I saw him at the front entrance. These aren’t just friends we lost, these are family, you know?” Von Molt said. “I’ve gone there for two years and promoted there and these are my family. Knowing that I lost at least four of them that’s something that will live with me forever.”
Von Molt was able to escape without being shot but her arm was injured as she was trampled in the panic inside the bar.
That panic was familiar and frightening for many in Thursday’s crowd who were survivors of the Las Vegas Route 91 Harvest festival shooting.
“It’s like the Band-aid is just kind of being torn off over and over again. And it’s just trying to get through it with a lot of faith and support from our friends and our families,” said Las Vegas shooting survivor Amelie Gonzalez.