NewsClub Q Shooting


'You saved my people': Community expresses gratitude towards heroes who stopped Club Q shooter

Colorado Springs Shooting
Posted at 4:31 PM, Nov 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-02 16:03:17-05

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Mikayla Cortes has been going to Club Q in Colorado Springs for years.

"I didn't know where to be accepted," she said.

Cortes found that acceptance at the club, especially through her friendship with Derrick Rump.

"Derrick made sure I was accepted and felt loved," said Cortes. "It's my family. I've celebrated so many things there, birthdays. Everybody knew that was my place."

Rump was one of the five people killed in Saturday's mass shooting at Club Q. It's a place that is now forever changed.

Cortes knows the tragedy could have been much worse had it not been for heroes like Richard Fierro and Thomas James, who jumped in to tackle the gunman.

"I got into the mode. I needed to save my family, and my family, at that time, was everybody in the room," Fierro told the media.

Fierro, a former Army major and an Iraqi war veteran, owns Atrevida Beer Company in Colorado Springs. His family was out enjoying a fun night when a gunman opened fire.

"I saw him and went and got him," he said.

James, a sailor in the U.S. Navy, is still recovering in the hospital.

Coloradans, in the midst of grief, are also expressing overwhelming gratitude for the two heroes.

"If he wasn’t there, there would have been more lives taken," said Lola Rodriguez, Mikayla Cortes' cousin. She was planning on going out to Club Q with her cousin but ended up staying in.

"I know he’s heard it so many times. He’s gonna hear it so many more times. Thank you," said Cortes. "You saved people, you saved my people. You put your life on the line for us, and I appreciate it so much."

Fierro is also mourning the loss of a family member, Raymond Green Vance, Fierro's daughter's boyfriend. Vance was also killed in the shooting.

"I’m so sorry you lost Raymond. He did not deserve that. I recognize your daughter and him from seeing them at the club," Cortes added.

The community is now forever bonded by the tragedy.

"I really hope people use this and shake someone’s hand, give someone a hug, a kiss," Fierro said.

In a message to Fierro, Mikayla said, "I'm at a loss for words for you and your family. I just want to say thank you. If there's anything you need, I'm here."