Kessingland newly-weds make narrow escape from Las Vegas shooting as mother tells of their ordeal
PUBLISHED: 15:23 03 October 2017
The mother of a Kessingland man caught in the middle of the Las Vegas shooting has described her agonising wait to hear of her son’s safety.
Philip Dyer, 50, had travelled to Las Vegas to tie the knot with partner Vanessa and the pair were out toasting their new marriage when Stephen Paddock opened fire on a nearby country music festival.
Now, his 73-year-old mother, Genevive Dyer has told of his ordeal, as well as the constant worry plaguing her throughout the horrific events.
She said: “The first I heard was when my other son rang me and told me to turn on the news. I was utterly terrified.
“I immediately sent him a WhatsApp message to see if he was okay, but then got myself in an even bigger panic. At the time, it wasn’t clear whether there was another shooter so I was terrified he was hiding somewhere and my message may have caused his phone to beep and give up where he was.”
As she waited for his reply she described herself as feeling “in limbo”, seeing the death count increase on television and fearing the worst.
When Mrs Dyer eventually did hear from her son, she said she was gobsmacked by just how close he and his new wife were to the terror, but so relieved they were safe.
Mrs Dyer said: “They were walking down the strip as the shots started and were bundled into a shoe shop for safety. From what I gather there were around 30 other people hiding with them.
“They were then taken to the MGM Casino, I think by military personnel, where they were kept until it was safe for them to leave.”
Mrs Dyer added that the pair had been staying in the Luxor Hotel, just meters from the Mandalay Bay Hotel, from which the gunman launched his assault.
“I was absolutely terrified,” she added. “My phone has been ringing off the hook since with people asking how they are and whether I had heard anything.
“I know it sounds strange given they are in a whole different country but I was just picturing a police officer turning up on the doorstep, but I’m just so relieved they are safe.”
The new Mr and Mrs Dyer have since left Las Vegas, continuing their travels in New York before returning to their home in Kessingland a week on Wednesday.