‘I look to my left and I see a helpless man’s body’: Local couple recalls tragic night at Astroworld Festival

Local News

HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — At least seven of the eight victims killed on Friday during the Astroworld Festival disaster have been publicly identified and multiple investigations are underway.

A Harlingen couple who went to the Festival said they’re thankful to have made it home.

Courtesy of Caitlyn Gonzales

Daniel Diaz, 20, said he was excited to go to the Astroworld Festival in Houston with his girlfriend Caitlyn Gonzales, 19, but within seconds of headliner Travis Scott taking the stage, the crowd became overwhelming. 

“The first 30 seconds of Travis Scott performing, people were compressing, people were trying to move forward and there was not enough space for people to move forward; it was just a square space,” said Gonzales. 

During that time, they both went to one of the barriers where they said they were pushed against and tried to help each other to safety.

“I had to literally carry my girlfriend over people and reach the barrier and even then it was difficult to get over that,” said Diaz. 

Courtesy of Caitlyn Gonzales

Gonzales said she didn’t realize she had scars on her back from the barrier until later that night because at the time they were thinking of getting to the exit.

While walking to the exit area they witnessed mayhem around them. 

“I look to my left and I see a helpless man’s body on the floor like lifeless. He was not responsive, he was not responding to any of the medics, he did not look like he was breathing or alive,” said Gonzales. 

Authorities said the crowd, which numbered around 50,000, were at the concert and multiple people were sent to the hospital with serious injuries as hundreds tried to surge to the front of the stage. 

“I want to first start by expressing my most sincere condolences to the families. This is an unimaginable experience and it’s because of that we are committed to making sure this is a complete and full investigation,” said Chief Samuel Peña, Houston Fire Department. 

The headline performer Travis Scott said on Twitter in part quote “I am committed to working together with the Houston community to heal and support the families in need.”

However, Diaz said that is not enough. 

“Later in the show, he pointed out he did see some people climbing the trees so he had a very good view of what was going on and for him to not acknowledge bodies on the floor or more people calling for help because it was definitely going on there,” said Diaz.

They both hope this can be a moment to bring future change in how concerts are conducted. 

“I definitely believe that the artists themselves should start promoting kids to not be so energetic in a way of harming any other human being because that was definitely going on in that environment,” said Diaz. 

Both of them said the pain of that night will never truly be forgotten, and they are praying for the victims’ families and hope change comes from this tragic event. 

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