ALLEN (CBSNewsTexas.com) — Shortly after a gunman opened fire at Allen Premium Outlets Saturday afternoon, Steven Spainhouer leapt into action.
Spainhouer rushed desperately to the aid of the wounded and dying after gunfire had erupted shortly after 3.30pm on 6 May.
He said the victims had injuries so horrific they had to be loaded into police cars because ambulances would not get them fast enough to nearby trauma facilities.
When asked if he thought he’d saved lives, Spainhouer said he’s not sure, but he knows he’s lost three people.
He said he ran to the mall when his son called to say there had been gunfire outside H&M, the store where he worked.
“When the multiple shots happened, my heart just dropped,” she said. “I was on the phone with 911 and I was telling them we have a mass casualty accident.”
Spainhouer said he arrived ahead of any first responders and while a handful of people around him recorded video of the bodies on the ground, he scrambled to save lives.
“I never imagined that in 100 years I would be thrust into the position of being the first first responder on site caring for people,” he shared. “The first girl I approached was squatting covering her head in the bushes, so I felt her pulse, I pulled her head to the side of her and she had no face.”
Spainhouer said he also found a baby, who survived while covered by his protective mother who had been killed.
“When I tipped over the mother, he came out. I asked him if he was okay and he said, ‘My mother is hurt, my mother is hurt.’ So rather than traumatize him, I dragged him around the corner, sat him down and he was covered head to toe… like someone had spilled blood on him.”
Spainhouer said what he witnessed on Saturday will haunt him for the rest of his life.
“Nobody can see what we saw today and not be affected by it,” he said. “It’s not a situation I would wish on anyone, it’s just unfathomable to see carnage.”
Spainhouer’s son says two customers inside the H&M store were among the injured. “It’s hard when you see a family that’s out shopping, having fun, being wiped off the face of the Earth because someone with a gun has some other kind of problem.”