White House today released the first consoling images of President Obama visiting some of the victims of the movie theatre shooting in Aurora, Colorado.
One of the moments that touched President Obama the most was when he met with Allie Young and Stephanie Davies.
The two friends were sitting in one of the front rows of the theatre and were just a few feet away from the canisters that shooter James Holmes threw on the ground after entering through an emergency exit.
Young, 19, stood up to turn and alert the audience about the canisters and she was quickly shot in the neck. The bullet hit a vein and she began bleeding profusely.
‘Stephanie, 21-years-old, had the presence of mind to drop down on the ground with her, pull her out of the aisle, place her fingers over where she –where Allie had been wounded, and applied pressure the entire time while the gunman was still shooting,’ President Obama told reporters during his trip to Aurora on Sunday.
Once the SWAT team moved into the theatre, Davies found people to help her carry Young out of the cinema and across a parking lot to the area where emergency crews and ambulances were waiting.
‘Because of Stephanie’s timely actions, I just had a conversation with Allie downstairs, and she is going to be fine,’ Mr Obama said.
‘I don’t know how many people at any age would have the presence of mind that Stephanie did or the courage that Allie showed.’
The President used this story as an example of the heroism that was showed, and that he suggests people focus on in light of the horrible events.
‘And so as tragic as the circumstances of what we’ve seen today are, as heartbreaking as it is for the families, it’s worth us spending most of our time reflecting on young Americans like Allie and Stephanie. Because they represent what’s best in us and they assure us that out of this darkness a brighter day is going to come.’
President Barack Obama attempted to console the nation on Sunday night as he met with the distraught families of those gunned down in a minute and a half of horror at a midnight movie showing in Colorado.
Hundreds gathered to hear the President’s remarks holding white balloons and with black ribbons pinned to their shirts in mourning.
Speaking of the family members he had the opportunity to console, he had a somber message.
‘I come to them not so much as president as I do as a father and as a husband,’ he said to the crowd gathered outside the hospital. ‘I confessed to them that words are always inadequate.’
During the brief visit, just under two-and-a-half hours, he met with Jordan Ghawi, the brother of victim Jessica Ghawi. Mr Ghawi has been urging the public not to glorify the massacre by naming the shooter, asking that everyone focus on the victims instead.
‘Sat down with President Obama. He has been incredible. He too has agreed not to mention the shooter’s name,’ Mr Ghawi tweeted. Mr Ghawi also got confirmation from the press secretary that sat down with President Obama. He has been incredible. He too has agreed that the president ‘will not utter the name of the suspect who committed this act.’
Mr Obama stayed true to his pledge, speaking about the heroism of the emergency responders and family and friends that worked together during the shooting.