Two women who died in the past year from injuries they suffered during the 2017 Las Vegas massacre have been added to the official death toll – bringing fatalities to 60 – on the shooting’s third anniversary.
Clark County Sherrif Joe Lombardo revealed on Thursday that he officially increased the number of people killed in America’s deadliest mass shooting by two from 58.
Lombardo’s announcement came one day after MGM International and its insurers were ordered to pay $800million in settlements to more than 4,400 relatives and victims of the shooting.
Kimberly Gervais of Mira Loma, California, and Samanta Arjune of Las Vegas, Nevada, both suffered a ‘delayed death’ after being wounded in the gunfire, per the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
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Kimberly Gervais (left) and Samanta Arjune (right) both died two years after they suffered debilitating gunshot wounds amid the 2017 Las Vegas shooting
Around 22,000 people attended the Route 91 Harvest Festival in 2017, where a gunman killed 60 people at injured more than 850 others
People bow their heads in prayer during a ceremony Thursday on the anniversary of the mass shooting three years earlier in Las Vegas.
Gervais died at Redlands Community Hospital on November 15, 2019, after becoming a quadriplegic when a bullet struck her vertebra.
A previous report from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department found that Gervais, 57, died of complications of the spinal injury related to the mass shooting.
Arjune died at a Las Vegas hospital on May 26 after a bullet lodged into her calf, intertwined with nerves in her leg and shattered the bone, a GoFundMe said.
She died of complications related to the injury, which her family said caused Arjune ‘extreme pain’ that ‘would last the rest of her life.’ She was 46.
‘Three years have passed since I stood before you and the public, and spoke about the worst human loss the community and the United States has ever known at the hands of a single suspect,’ Lobardo said at the annual 1 October Sunrise Remembrance ceremony on Thursday.
‘The thoughts of that tragic night and its aftermath still bring back painful emotions. The shock and the confusion – it does not fade from one’s memory.
‘And for many of the victims’ families, I know 1 October feels like three days ago. Not three years.’
Gervais (pictured) died at Redlands Community Hospital in November 2019 after becoming a quadriplegic when a bullet struck her vertebra
Arjune (pictured) died at a Las Vegas, Nevada, hospital on May 26 due to complications from her leg injury
The ceremony was held at the Clark County Government Center ampitheater with speakers including Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak and Albert Rivera, the father of 21-year-old victim Jordyn Rivera.
The gunman, Stephen Paddock (above), killed himself before police could make an arrest
On October 1, 2017, Stephen Paddock leveraged an assault rifle out of a 32nd floor window in his Mandalay Bay Resort suite and opened fire on some 22,000 Route 91 Harvest music festival attendees.
More than 850 were injured and dozens killed as Paddock unleashed a rapid-fire attack at people, who dashed and dove for cover at the open-air venue.
Paddock committed suicide via gunshot and was dead by the time authorities reached his hotel suite. They found 23 guns inside he suite, as well as hundreds of rounds of ammunition.
Yesterday, a court approved millions in payouts from MGM Resorts International and its insurers.
Clark County District Court Judge Linda Bell, in her brief order, cited ‘near-unanimous participation in the settlement among potential claimants.’
MGM Resorts, owner of the hotel and the concert venue, acknowledged no liability with the settlement. It will pay $49 million, while its insurance companies will pay $751 million.
Gunman Stephen Paddock purchased a suite at the Mandalay Bay Resort and later opened fire from his 32nd floor window
Jimmy Long (left) embraces Debby Allen, mother of victim Christopher Roybal, (right) during a ceremony Thursday on the third anniversary of the Las Vegas shooting
‘We are grateful that the decision brings families, victims and the community closer to closure,’ the company said in a statement.
It noted the anniversary of the October 1, 2017, event, calling it ‘a time of great sadness and reflection.’
Memorial ceremonies were scheduled on Thursday at several venues in Las Vegas, including a reading of the names of the slain beginning at 10:05pm – the time the first shots rang out.
Attorney Robert Eglet, the plaintiffs’ lawyer who spent a year arranging the settlement with clients, legal firms and attorneys in at least 10 states, said amounts to be disbursed will be determined by two retired judges and he’s hopeful that payments will begin going out by the end of the year.
Tattoo artist Justin Warn gives a tattoo to Sue Ann Cornwell at an event put on by Healing Ink to give tattoos to survivors of the 2017 mass shooting at a country music festival in Las Vegas, Wednesday in Las Vegas
‘There’ve been no objections and we expect no appeals,’ Eglet told The Associated Press.
‘We’ll send out notices of the order. After 30 days the $800million will be deposited.’
The case will be dismissed at that time, he added.
Eglet previously said that everyone involved ‘recognized there are no winners in long, drawn-out litigation with multiple trials where people and the community are reliving the event every time we try a case.’
A line-by-line list of victims, identified by their initials only, runs for more than 170 pages of a 225-page civil complaint filed September 9 seeking compensation and punitive damages from MGM Resorts.
It accused the casino company of negligence, wrongful death and liability in the 2017 shooting.
Pictured: Las Vegas police stand guard along the streets outside the Route 91 Harvest Country music festival grounds of the Route 91 Harvest on October 1, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Pictured: Las Vegas residents donate blood at United Blood Services in Northwest Las Vegas, NV on October 2, 2017, after a mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest Festival near Mandalay Bay
Millions of dollars could go to the most severely and permanently injured, Eglet said, depending on factors including age, number of dependents, type of injuries, previous and future medical treatment, and ability to work.
A minimum $5,000 would go to each person who filed a claim for unseen injuries and did not seek medical attention or therapy.
Administrators of the account will be retired Nevada Judge Jennifer Togliatti and retired California Judge Louis Meisinger, with help from the Virginia-based claims management legal firm BrownGreer.
Court filings in the case don’t mention the gunman, Stephen Paddock, who killed himself before police closed in.
Las Vegas police and the FBI determined the 64-year-old retired accountant and high-stakes poker player meticulously planned the attack and acted alone.
They theorized he may have sought notoriety, but said they never determined a clear motive for the attack.
Las Vegas marks 3rd year since deadliest US mass shooting
by Associated Press
The sun rose Thursday over a somber ceremony marking the third anniversary of the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, as Las Vegas remembered the excruciating night when 58 people were killed at an outdoor country music festival in 2017.
‘Three years ago today, a heinous act of violence rained down on our city, our county and our state,’ Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak told a modest gathering at an open-air amphitheater at the Clark County Government Center. His voice cracked with emotion behind his coronavirus face mask as he recalled ‘everyone involved that helped us get through those tragic times.’
An unidentified woman cries during a ceremony Thursday, Oct. 1, 2020, on the anniversary of the mass shooting three years earlier in Las Vegas
‘Victim families will forever be in our hearts from 1 October,’ he said, ‘and we will never, never forget what happened that day or the lives that were lost and the lives that were changed.’
The ceremony drew perhaps 200 survivors, friends and elected officials. Plans to host no more than 50 people expanded on Tuesday to allow up to 250 when the governor, a Democrat, relaxed some statewide COVID-19 pandemic crowd restrictions.
Authorities said more than 850 people were injured in the attack by a lone shooter firing from upper-floor windows of the Mandalay Bay resort into an outdoor crowd of 22,000 attending the Route 91 Harvest Festival. Police later said 413 of the injured suffered bullet or shrapnel wounds, others were injured fleeing the concert venue.
Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo announced Thursday he was raising the department’s death toll from the shooting to 60. He drew local criticism in recent weeks for refusing to increase the number despite coroners´ rulings that two women died during the past year of wounds received three years ago.
‘We are all a statistic,’ Albert Rivera, father of slain 21-year-old Jordyn Rivera, told the amphitheater audience. ‘We are all part of this unwanted fraternity that we didn´t choose to be a part of. But because of this tragedy, a new family was born.’
Tattoo artist Jaded Moon gives a tattoo to Shannon Loveless at an event put on by Healing Ink to give tattoos to survivors of the 2017 mass shooting at a country music festival in Las Vegas, Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2020, in Las Vegas
Rivera, of La Verne, California, also marked the death in May of Greg Zanis, a carpenter from Aurora, Illinois, ‘who took it upon himself to build a simple white cross for each precious life lost.’
Images of the crosses in front of the famous ‘Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas’ sign became an iconic reminder of the shooting.
‘I, for one, will always be changed because he wanted to do something for the families,’ Rivera said of Zanis.
At the White House, President Donald Trump´s press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, kicked off a Thursday press briefing marking the anniversary.
‘Our hearts continue to break for the victims and their families,’ she said. ‘They are in our prayers today.’
Michael Bailey, right, of Highland, Calif. embraces Joanna Fuentes, of Whittier, California, during a ceremony Thursday on the anniversary of the mass shooting three years earlier in Las Vegas
Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden issued a statement calling the shooting ‘an act of pure malice, and yet another appalling act of gun violence – the kind that takes the lives of 100 Americans every day.’
‘Rather than let tragedy define the city, Nevadans did what you always do in hard times,’ the former vice president said. ‘You were resilient.’
Remembrances around Las Vegas ranged from a lawmaker setting out on a 58-kilometer (36-mile) fundraising run to blood drives to an invitation for survivors of the shooting to get tattoos.
The city’s mayor was due to host an after-dark reading of the names of the dead at a commemorative garden beginning at 10:05 p.m., the time the shooting started.
Authorities said gunfire lasted than 10 minutes and the shooter, Stephen Paddock, killed himself with a handgun before police blasted through doors that had been bracketed shut at his suite on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay.
Paddock, 64, a former accountant and high-stakes video poker player, had assembled a cache of assault-style weapons fitted with rapid-fire ‘bump stock’ devices and high-capacity magazines.
Diego Zazueta reacts in pain while getting a tattoo to cover a scar at an event put on by Healing Ink to give tattoos to survivors of the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas, Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2020, in Las Vegas
Las Vegas police and the FBI found that he meticulously planned the attack and said he acted alone. They theorized that he sought notoriety, but said they never determined a clear motive for the attack.
A Nevada judge on Wednesday signed off on a broad settlement involving MGM Resorts International, corporate owner of the hotel and the concert venue, and lawsuits involving more than 4,000 plaintiffs.
Victims and families are due in coming months to receive a total of $800 million in compensation, while the company acknowledges no liability. It will pay $49 million and its insurance companies will pay $751 million.
MGM Resorts had faced dozens of lawsuits in several states accusing it of failing to protect the concert crowd or stop Paddock from spending several days amassing his arsenal of weapons and ammunition before opening fire