Tempe couple lives through Vegas shooting, recalls lockdown at nearby hotel

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(Source: Nick Harte) (Source: Nick Harte)

A Tempe couple is home safe and uninjured after living through the most deadly mass shooting in modern U.S. history. 

It was supposed to be a weekend in Las Vegas to celebrate a friend's birthday, ending with a concert from Jason Aldean, one of their favorite artists.

 "At the end of that song is when the first few gunshots rang off," said Nick Harte, playing some of the cell phone video he recorded just moments before the first shots were fired. 

[RELATED: Prayer vigil held for Tucson native on life support after Las Vegas shooting]

Sounds Harte and his girlfriend Kirsten Hancock won't soon forget.

"We dropped down to the ground at that point and then I just looked at her and people started running and I was like, 'We got to go,'" said Harte.  

It was chaos, said Hancock. 

[RELATED: Report: University of Arizona grad died in Las Vegas massacre]

"Everybody was just screaming." 

No one knew where the shots were coming from or where to run.

"I think all the tall buildings made it sound like it was coming from every direction," said Hancock. 

"At every point it was like no they're coming this way, no they're coming this way. It was constant. It was like going through a maze that we hit a brick wall every single time and couldn't find our way out," said Harte. 

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They finally found shelter a couple blocks away at the Hooters Casino Hotel.

"We were terrified at that point, we were pulling tables over us or going to any extreme to find cover," said Harte. 

They hunkered down with the injured and stayed there on lockdown till 4:30 in the morning, missing their flight. 

While waiting for the all clear sign inside, they helped hand out water from behind the bar. Employees distributed blankets and sheets for everyone. 

They finally made it home Monday night. 

"We keep talking about how this is like a really bad dream that we can't wake up from," said Harte. "Those noises will definitely ring in our head for quite some time. Those gunshots.'"

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Lauren ReimerLauren Reimer joined the 3TV/CBS 5 family in June 2016. She is originally from Racine, WI but is no stranger to our heat.

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Lauren Reimer

She previously worked for KVOA in Tucson, covering topics that matter to Arizonans including the monsoon, wildfires and border issues. During the child migrant crisis of 2014, Reimer was one of only a handful of journalists given access to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection detention facility in Nogales, where hundreds of unaccompanied children were being held after crossing into the U.S. from Central America. Before that, Reimer worked at WREX in Rockford, IL. Lauren is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee and still visits home often. When not chasing news stories, Reimer loves to explore, enjoying everything from trying new adventurous foods to visiting state and national parks or local places of historical significance.

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