Thursday 21 June 2018

Couple who survived Las Vegas shooting killed in car crash

Dennis and Lorraine Carver chose to 'live in the moment' after escaping festival massacre unharmed, but died weeks later

Dennis and Lorraine Carver were killed in a car crash weeks after surviving the Las Vegas shooting (Image: Facebook)
Dennis and Lorraine Carver were killed in a car crash weeks after surviving the Las Vegas shooting (Image: Facebook)

Chris Baynes

A couple who survived the Las Vegas shooting have been killed in a car crash less than half a mile from their home.

Dennis and Lorraine Carver's daughters said her parents discovered a new lease of life after escaping unharmed from the massacre at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival on 1 October.

Mr Carver, 52, dived on top of his wife, 53, to shield her from a hail of bullets after Stephen Paddock opened fire on crowds from the nearby Mandalay Bay hotel, killing 59 people. The couple, who had two children, fled to safety during a lull in the gunfire.

But they died just weeks later after their car crashed and burst into flames outside their gated community in Riverside County, California.

“After the shooting, they heard from all of the people they cared about most. They were so happy,” said their daughter Brooke, 20. “The last two weeks of their lives were really just spent living in the moment.”

Brooke said her parents had a narrow escape in the shooting, which injured more than 500 people, with Paddock's bullets hitting man next to them.

Surviving the massacre made the "selfless" couple's bond even stronger, she added, recalling Mr Carver buying his wife roses "to give my mum a reason to smile after the shooting".

“I swear they were more in love those two weeks than the last 20 years," she told the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

She added: “We were so relieved when they got out of the shooting alive. But I also think we’ve been given little pieces of them that we would’ve never gotten if the shooting hadn’t happened right before they died.”

The couple's youngest daughter, Madison, 16, was at home when their car crashed into nearby metal gate on 16 October. She heard a loud bang at 10.50pm and ran down the street to find the family's vehicle engulfed in flames.

It took fire crews nearly an hour to extinguish the blaze.

“We’ve found some peace in knowing that our parents just loved each other so much that they had to go at the same time,” Madison said. “They couldn't’t live without each other.”

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