• ‘Sick of thoughts and prayers': Brother of local Las Vegas shooting victim pushes for change

    By: KIRO 7 News Staff

    Updated:

    As a North Bend woman recovers from the Las Vegas massacre, her brother is sharing passionate plea for something to be done about gun violence. 

    Alicia Johnston was shot in the back at the Las Vegas concert, where a gunman fired from his hotel window. Fifty-nine people died and at 527 others were wounded.

    Alicia was with her husband, Nick. Her mother told KIRO-7 Johnston’s husband took off his shirt and used it to put pressure on the wound.  

    >> The Northwest heroes who stepped up as chaos reigned in Las Vegas

    The Mount Si High School 2008 graduate went into surgery for her tailbone. In the hours after the shooting, Alicia’s family huddled together while others offered their “thoughts and prayers.” 

    "I'm sick and tired of thoughts and prayers,” brother Zach Elmore said.

    “If thoughts and prayers had any effect whatsoever, there would be a lot of people still alive today. All these thoughts and prayers would've miraculously pulled bullets out of victims and healed wounds; would've stopped these massacres before they started.”

    >> Read about the northwest survivors and victims here 

    Alicia is now healing from a second surgery in Bellevue. Doctors found an additional bullet fragment in her leg. She’d expected to fully recover in six to eight weeks. 

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    Meanwhile, her brother is appealing for change to lawmakers both in state and Washington, D.C. 

    “There is never a wrong time to stand up for what you think is right. My sister was shot in Las Vegas in the latest of a devastatingly long line of mass shootings in this country. We're luckier than 58 people and their families, and likely luckier than many of the over 500 other people who were injured. If I don't talk about it, if we don't truly take steps to affect positive change, everyone reading this will forget it happened because they'll be sending thoughts and prayers to the victims of the next mass shooting in America,” he said. 

    Zach has turned to Facebook to share his message. He believes that a weapon, such as the one used in the Las Vegas shooting, has no place in society. 

    >> Read about bump stocks and calls to ban them here 

    Alicia’s husband, Nick Johnson, told KIRO 7 News, that as a gun holder, the mass shooting hasn’t changed his feelings about guns. 

    "I don't blame the guns for firing their bullets at me or my wife. I blame the asshole that did it,” he said. 

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