Tuesday, April 15, 2008

It Could Get Festive 2

            It was a Friday night and the Saturday Night Specials  always came out. It came in as a shooting at Concord and Paramore. Paramore had a liquor store on the corner a block or so north of this address called Liquor World. Our nickname for it was Murder World. Paramore was the center of the rough side of things where desperate people mixed with violent predators in a vicious dance. We were asked to the dance anytime the two connected.  

As we neared the scene  we were stopped by the police. They told us to hold up that shots were still being fired at the scene and near the scene. They were wide eyed and wired. We fed off their adrenaline as we sat there waiting. Cop cars would race by lights flashing as other officers responded. It was enough to crank up the volume. To get things really humming before we went in. Finally after what seemed an eternity we got the all clear and we were told the scene was safe and to go on in. 
We drove the short few blocks and bailed out of the truck. When we arrived to find to find a single victim. A huge male illuminated in the flashlights of several cops. In the hard light of the flashlights and our headlights the whole scene looked like a black and white picture. 
The victim was large enough that he looked like a professional football lineman, he had a single .22 caliber gunshot wound to the left chest. 
     The scene was chaotic. Police were running around with their guns drawn and eyes wide shouting at someone down the street. The ambulance had arrived with us and the four of us got right to work. He had no perceptible pulse but his heart still showed a rhythm.            
More loud shouting by the cops as we did our assessment. Then we heard gunshots nearby. Still more shouting as the police tried to figure out what was going on and who was shooting at whom. They were not the one firing their weapons. Things were getting very festive at this point. We were frantically trying to get this guy ready for transport so we could get the hell out of there. We got a line, put on the MAST suit, got him on 100% O2 and on a backboard. It took all four of us to lift the backboard onto the stretcher.      There was a black and white picture of us the next day in the paper.(See above) We were all black silhouettes framed in the headlights of one of the trucks. We are on our knees bent over the patient trying to start IV’s. The lead to the story was help arriving in the midst of shooting. It is exactly how I remember that scene in black and white silhouettes framed in the headlights.             We finally got he patient packed and ready to be transported. It took all four of us to load the patient onto the stretcher. It was time to to get out of there.  So we loaded the patient and got him to the hospital. He died in the emergency room. This story is from the early days, around 1977 or 1978. Most of it I wrote at the time it happened. I have left the wording as much intact as I could.