MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – When Jeff Bridges and his wife Andrea walked into their Las Vegas hotel room, they were taken aback by how huge it was.
Bridges, who was born on the former Myrtle Beach Air Force Base and now lives in Charlotte, said their switch in accommodations followed a complaint to the staff of the Mandalay Bay resort. They were upgraded to a suite on the 32nd floor, which provided awe-inspiring views of the city that made the couple not want to leave the room.
"The view of the strip was unbelievable," Bridges said.
That breathtaking room with its fantastic view was one the couple would never forget. On Monday, those memories were tarnished when Bridges and his wife learned the room they stayed in in January 2016 – room 32-135 – is the same one where 64-year-old Stephen Paddock is said to have opened fire on a crowd at a country music festival just across the street from Mandalay Bay.
Officials say 59 people were killed and over 500 more injured late Sunday night in what has been called the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history.
When Bridges woke up Monday morning and started watching news, he recognized the vantage point the shooter had – it was the same one he and Andrea had during their Vegas trip.
Bridges wanted to capture the magic and beauty of the room, so he filmed a video. Before Monday, he hadn't looked at the footage in over a year.
That video confirmed that he had stayed in the same room as Paddock, roughly 18 months earlier. The realization left Bridges with "a knot in the middle of my stomach."
"It went from the best hotel room we've ever stayed in to the worst hotel room we've ever stayed in," he said.
Bridges and his wife then wrestled with a decision; should they put the footage out there for the public to see?
Ultimately, they decided to go that route. Bridges posted the video of their suite at the Mandalay Bay to his personal Facebook page.
Bridges said their hope is that people who watch the video will have a better understanding of just what was in the room prior to the start of the suspect's shooting rampage.
He also sent thoughts and prayers to the families of the victims of this "needless tragedy."