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In his own words: Pulse Nightclub shooting survivor Angel Colon speaks out

Angel Colon, a survivor of the mass shooting that killed 49 at an Orlando gay nightclub, speaks to the media for the first time at a news conference Tuesday at the Orlando Regional Medical Center. Colon's life was saved by the efforts of the trauma surgeons at Orlando Regional Medical Center, according to the hospital. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]
Published Jun. 14, 2016

At a news conference Tuesday at Orlando Regional Medical Center, 26-year-old Angel Colon praised the trauma team he credits for saving his life after he was shot at Pulse Nightclub early Sunday morning. He described, in detail, how he survived a spray of gunshots he calls "shotguns." This is his account, in his own words:

Sunday morning, early morning, we were just having a great time. We were all just there having a drink. It was shortly after 2. We were saying our good-byes. I'm hugging everyone. It was a great night. No drama, just smiles, just laughter...

And out of nowhere, we just hear a big shotgun. We stop what we're doing, and it just keeps going....

We grabbed each other. We started running.

I was shot about three times in my leg. I had fallen down. I tried to get back up, but everyone started running everywhere.

I got trampled over. I shattered and broke my bones on my left leg. So by this time, I couldn't walk at all. All I could do was lay down there while everyone was running on top of me, trying to get to where they had to be. All I could hear was the shotguns. One after another. People screaming. People yelling for help.

By this time, this man, he goes into the other room, and I can just hear more shotguns going on. I thought I was a little safe at this time, because it's giving everyone time to tackle him down or get him down.

I hear him come back and he's shooting everyone that's already dead on the floor, making sure they are dead. I was able to peek over, and I can just see him shooting at everyone. I can hear the shotguns closer.

I look over, and he shoots the girl next to me. And I'm just there laying down, I'm thinking, I'm next. I'm dead.

IN HIS OWN WORDS: Survivor Angel Santiago speaks out

I don't know how, but by the glory of God, he shoots toward my head but it hits my hand, and then he shoots me again and it hits the side of my hip.

I had no reaction. I was prepared to just stay there, laying down so that he won't know that I'm alive. He's just doing this for another five, 10 minutes, just shooting all over the place.

By this time, he goes up to the front, and I think that's when he's battling against the cops. I just hear shotguns going all over the place.

And I'm looking up and some cop, which I wish I can remember his face or his name, because to this day, I'm grateful for him. He looks at me. He makes sure I'm alive. And he grabs my hand. And he's like, "This is the only way I can take you out." I'm like, "Please carry me. I'm in pain right now." I couldn't walk or anything. So he starts to drag me out across the street to a Wendy's, and I'm grateful for him, but the floor is just covered in glass.

IN HER OWN WORDS: Survivor Patience Carter speaks out

So he's dragging me out while I'm just getting cut. My behind. My back. My legs. I don't feel pain, but I just feel all this blood on me — from myself, from other people. And he just drops me off across the street.

And I look over. There's just bodies everywhere.

We're all in pain.

We were able to get to the ambulance.


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