Brazos Valley couple describes moments when tragedy struck at Astroworld Music Festival
“I did not expect people to lose their lives. I did not expect hundreds of people to still be missing.”
HOUSTON, Texas (KBTX) -The Astroworld Music Festival in Houston turned deadly as more than 50,000 people surged the stage as Travis Scott and others performed Friday night. A Conroe couple volunteering at the event said they knew things would be wild but didn’t expect the event to turn tragic.
Authorities say at least eight people died and hundreds were injured during what’s being described by officials as a “crowd surge.”
Lauren Henderson and Jake Majeski from Conroe were volunteering at the event to help raise money for a local softball team. They say the event started normally, but things got out of control as Travis Scott and Drake performed.
”There was a lot of drug use, there was definitely a lot of drinking, but I never expected it to get this bad. I knew it would be wild. I knew it would be a little crazy. I did not expect people to lose their lives. I did not expect hundreds of people to still be missing.”
It got to the point that the couple had to help attendees get medical attention.
“Eventually, they got a little bit wild, probably within the first 20 minutes of him being on stage. The crowd started moving closer and closer to the stage,” said Henderson. “People were getting trampled. When we shut down our booth, we had a guy come up that was having an anxiety attack. I mean, he was hyperventilating, panicking, his little brother got pushed down and trampled, kicked, hit, somebody stole his shoes. We ended up having to take him over to the medical tent.”
Henderson’s boyfriend, Jake Majeski, thinks event organizers weren’t prepared for the crowds.
“They were rushing the gates as early as 8 a.m. We were there setting up at nine to start serving. We were already serving at nine in the morning. If they’re already rushing the gates and they sold 100,000 tickets, it was overcapacity,” said Majeski.
At one point, Henderson describes getting separated from Majeski. She says it’s a night that she will never forget.
“We saw people laying there. I don’t know if they were passed out or if they were sleeping. I don’t know if they were somebody that passed away. I didn’t stop for that. I just walked out. I grabbed on to him, and he held on to me, and we just left. It was awful.”
Majeski and Henderson credit first responders, vendors, employees, and fans that stopped to help those injured in the incident.
“I know the staff that we worked with worked really hard to help anyone they could,” said Majeski. “I saw quite a few people who went above and beyond to help people who were hurt. The guy that was having the panic attack, we had one of our beer vendors go get a golf cart and drive him down to medical.”
“There were multiple law enforcement agencies, multiple medical agencies, fire departments, people in the crowd that were nurses,” said Henderson. “There were people who were attendees doing CPR, trying to pick people up, trying to get them to medical. Medical was just overrun. They did not have enough medical staff to attend to the number of injuries and help they needed, but they did what they could. They did their best.”
Henderson and Majeski returned to Houston Saturday morning to take food, water, and supplies to first responders and people in need.
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