Among the thousands of people who were fortunate enough to safely flee the scene of the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas on 1 October 2017, as a gunman poured bullets into the crowd from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel, was 28-year-old Kymberley Suchomel of Apple Valley, California.
Unfortunately, Ms. Suchomel’s respite was short-lived, as she passed away suddenly a week after that tragic event, from causes as yet unknown but quite possibly related to her existing medical conditions (compounded by the stress of her terrifying experience):
Suchomel, 28, who was not injured during [the] shooting, died early [October 9] at her Apple Valley home, according to her grandmother, Julie Norton, the co-founder of the High Desert Phoenix Foundation.
Norton found Suchomel just after 8:30 a.m. when she arrived to care for her 3-year-old great-granddaughter, Scarlett. She believes Suchomel may have died in her sleep after her husband, Mike, left for work at 4:30 a.m.
“Kymberley had epilepsy and she’s always been prone to seizures — she told her friend that she recently had three focal seizures,” Norton told the Daily Press. “I believe the stress from the shooting took her life.”
Suchomel, who was taking medication for a pituitary tumor, shared her fear of trying to fall sleep at night as the “sounds of gunfire” become louder in her head and the images of “broken and bloody bodies” flashed through her mind.
Ms. Suchomel’s sudden passing drew a good deal of online attention because a Facebook post attributed to her, made a few days after the shooting (from an account that has since been set private), included a harrowing account of the shooting that referenced the presence of multiple gunmen:
We were rounding some sort of corner maybe and I looked to the right and I saw this large cowboy sitting down with his legs spread, holding a blood-soaked woman. I thought to myself “we NEED to hide”, but as I looked quickly for somewhere to go, the gunfire once again got closer and closer. We couldn’t hide because they (and I do mean THEY) were chasing us. That exact moment is when I started to really panic. That is the exact moment in which I thought this was it, I was going to die, I was never going to see my family again. So, as we are running, we approach this fence where men are throwing women over, and we ran up to it as they had knocked It down, so we were able to get out. As we crossed the threshold of the venue, my mind went straight to other mass shootings and hearing the victim’s families in my head talk about how they never got to say goodbye. I did not want this for my husband (who was at work) & my grandma (who had my daughter, Scarlett). So, at 10:07pm I called my husband franticly leaving him a voicemail telling him that I loved him and was in the middle of a shooting & I wasn’t sure if I would make it out alive. Next, while still running, I called my grandma to tell her the exact same thing. But the gunfire wasn’t stopping this whole time. It wasn’t ceasing. It wasn’t slowing down. And It was directly behind us, following us. Bullets were coming from every direction. Behind us, in front of us, to the side of us. But I know, I just know, that there was someone chasing us. The entire time I felt this way. The farther we got from the venue, the closer the gunfire got. I kept looking back expecting to see the gunmen and I say MEN because there was more than one person. There was more than one gun firing. 100% more than one. As we were running, we kept changing direction, because it felt like no matter what direction we took, we were being followed.
I have bene watching the news non-stop since I arrived back home to my family. And it just doesn’t make sense. The story that are feeding everyone doesn’t add up to our eyewitness accounts. There is something wrong with what they are saying & the evidence seems fake if you ask me. There are multiple people stating that there was a lady towards the beginning of the evening who had made her way up to the stage warning people that we were all gunna die her and her boyfriend were escorted off the premises. Why has she not been mentioned by authorities? Every single survivor I have talked to also remembers multiple shooters, and at least one from the ground why aren’t we being taken more seriously? Tons of things don’t add up.
We can’t speak to Ms. Suchomel’s experience (nor inquire with her about it), but her reference to a woman’s supposedly issuing an ominous warning well before the shooting began appears to have been an exaggerated account stemming from an unrelated altercation. And although conspiracy theories about a “second gunman” began circulating shortly after the shooting, no credible information has turned up in the investigation so far suggesting that more than one person fired upon the concert crowd that evening.
Kymberley’s untimely death has been compared in many online accounts to that of John Beilman, a New York resident who killed himself and his daughter in a 3 October 2017 murder-suicide — reportedly just one day after FBI agents had searched his home. A much-replicated conspiracy tale maintained Beilman was being investigated in connection with the Las Vegas mass shooting, but that account was a fabrication which originated with a well known fake news site.