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We’ve all seen the video footage. The sound of shots coming from an automatic weapon pierces the music of Jason Aldean, only pausing for the shooter to change his clip. It seems endless. SiriusXM’s “The Highway” host and longtime country music fan Storme Warren can attest to that. He was there, side stage with Jake Owen, watching their pal Jason play when the shooting began.

Storme called into SiriusXM’s “The Howard Stern Show” just hours after the shooting took place and shared his harrowing story.

Like many others who were there, Storme told colleague Howard that he didn’t realize it was gunfire at first. “We thought it was a pyrotechnic glitch or an audio glitch,” he said. “We didn’t see any pyrotechnics, but it sounded like it could have been a flash from pyrotechnics. The first volley that came, which was rat-a-tat-tat, it was like, ‘Oh, that’s odd.’ Then the long volley came after that which lasted a long time. We knew that something was really wrong.”


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Not surprising, Storme admitted he stood like a “deer in the headlights” at first, but then realized that there were bullets hitting the stage 10 feet away from him. “Everybody dove off the stage,” he recalled. “We hid behind a cement block that was anchoring part of the stage to stage right. I was with Jake Owen and his tour manager, Greg Fowler, and he and I just hovered below this concrete block below the stage, just going, ‘When is this going to stop?’ And every time we thought it would stop, there’d be a pause and you’d realize, this guy is just reloading.” He says the shooting was “non-stop.”

The group of friends eventually found shelter in country star Chris Young’s room, but not before helping as many people as they could. “We were literally dragging people out of the grass,” Storme said. “We were stepping over dead people.” Storme’s voice was emotional as he continued, “People were running around going, ‘My girlfriend has been hit,’ ‘My boyfriend is hit,’ ‘My husband is hit,’ and you’re just trying to figure out where to go and what to do.”

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While the scene was chaos during the shooting, in the aftermath, things were different. “That’s one thing that I want to make very clear—this group of people were organized to save people,” he said, choking back tears. “It was pretty magical to see how many people went out to save other people.

“That’s what you do, isn’t it? That’s what you’re supposed to do. When you see people hurting, aren’t you supposed to go help them,” he asked.

Yes. It is indeed.

Based in Nashville, Tammy is a 20-year veteran of the country music community. She has worked in marketing, PR and artist development in the past. Follow her @TammyGooGoo and join the conversation @RareCountry
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