Facebook / Taylor Winston
The US Marine veteran who stole a pickup truck to drive around 30 injured people during the Las Vegas shooting to hospital, has returned the vehicle to its owner.
Taylor Winston took it upon himself to snatch the white truck in a frantic bid to get victims of the massacre to safety and care.
29-year-old Taylor, who did two tours of Iraq, had been in attendance at the Route 91 Harvest Festival with friends when Stephen Paddock began shooting into the 22,000 capacity crowd.
Paddock was stationed in a hotel room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay, a quarter-mile from the event.
He shot himself before armed police were able to reach his room, from which he had unleashed gunfire at the innocent people for a total of eleven minutes.
After finding refuge, Taylor, along with his friend Jenn Lewis, began rounding up the wounded numbers of victims into the back of the truck which thankfully, still had the keys inside.
Taylor sped in the vehicle to Desert Springs Hospital Medical Center, telling CBS News:
I saw a field with a bunch of white trucks. I tested my luck to see if any of them had keys in it, first one we tried opening had keys sitting right there. I started looking for people to take to the hospital.
There was just too many and it was overwhelming how much blood was everywhere.
I think a lot of my training in the military helped me in the situation. We needed to get them out of there regardless of our safety.
Taylor is unaware of how many of the victims he dropped off survived.
In a text message to Taylor, posted on Facebook, the owner wrote:
Hey Taylor, told you might have the keys to my truck? All I want is the key. Other than that it’s all water under the bridge to me. How’s the person you hauled doing?
I have em for ya. When do you want to meet for em? We’re at the Monte Carlo. I took about 30 critically injured to the hospital. Your truck was extremely important saving those people’s lives.
I don’t know if they all made it. Sorry about doing so and all the blood.
I saved the tool box too. We pulled it out to fit more people but put it back in after the 3rd trip.
Check out the news report below:
The massacre began at 10.05pm Sunday night after Paddock smashed two windows in his hotel suite and began shooting at festival-goers who were enjoying the country music event.
He had an arsenal of weapons with him, including fully-automatic rifles and thousands of rounds of ammunition.
It's still unclear what his motive was.
In a statement Paddock's girlfriend, Marilou Danley, said:
He never said anything to me or took any action that I was aware of that I understood in any way to be a warning that something horrible like this was going to happen.
It never occurred to me in any way whatsoever that he was planning violence against anyone.
Sunday's shooting is the deadliest in modern US history, eclipsing last June's Pulse nightclub massacre which saw the death of up to 49 people partying at a bar.
Our thoughts continue to go out to those affected by the tragedy in Las Vegas.