The 2017 Route 91 Harvest Festival mass shooting that killed 58 people in Las Vegas has claimed another victim. Kim Gervais, who was shot and paralyzed in the shooting has died as a result of her injuries from the tragic day.
Gervais' sister, Dena Sarvela, confirmed Gervais' death to Fox 12 in Oregon. The 58-year-old had gone to the festival with two friends, Dana Smith and Pati Mestas. According to a New York Times piece about Gervais, Smith escaped safely, Mestas died, and Gervais was left paralyzed from the neck down in the shooting.
"She hurt. Even though she was paralyzed from the neck up, she could feel all the pain," Sarvela says. "There was scrap metal still in her because [the shooter] used exploding bullets."
It too Gervais almost an entire year after the shooting before she was able to transport out to go back home to California.
"That was rough," Sarvela says, adding, "She lost her zest for life because of it, because of the shooting, because of her injuries that she sustained. It was har to be that same person, that we all know and love."
Sarvela says the first day she saw her sister after the tragedy is a day that will never leave her mind. "When I saw her, you could just tell. She was done," she explains.
Gervais leaves behind a brother, two daughters and grandchildren. Her husband died in 2000 and ever since she's managed their small business on her own.
"She was ready to retire. Her and I spoke the night before she went to the concert. She was going to sell the business, she was ready to just go abroad and enjoy life, like she should have, and it was snatched from her," Sarvela says. "She worked her life, and butt off for – just to go enjoy, you know, and she doesn’t get that, she doesn’t get that chance."
She adds, "I also know she was missing her husband very, very much, and that’s what gives me hope -- that she’s with him right now. Gives me a lot of hope, and I know they are."
Gervais' family has planned two memorial services; one in Los Angeles, where she lived, and another in Kansas City, where she grew up. Her siblings plan to take her ashes on a road trip across the United States, like the ones they used to take as children.
The 2017 Route 91 Harvest Festival shooting killed 58 other people and left over 800 others injured as well. This still remains the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
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