Mourners pay tearful tribute to Vegas victim who saved wife

Mourners pay tearful tribute to Vegas victim who saved wife

October 7th, 2017 by Associated Press in National General

A mourner hugs family members during a memorial service for Jack Beaton at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Bakersfield, Calif., on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017. Beaton was a victim of the Oct. 1 mass shooting in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Silvia Flores)

Photo by The Associated Press /Times Free Press.

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (AP) - Friends, relatives and an outpouring of grievers have gathered in California to celebrate the life of a man who died shielding his wife during the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.

More than 800 people packed a Bakersfield church to honor Jack Beaton, who was in Las Vegas last Sunday to celebrate his 23rd wedding anniversary at a country music festival.

Beaton's memorial service was among the first held for the 58 people killed when gunman Stephen Paddock opened fire from a casino hotel room across the street from the festival.

The community of Bakersfield was home to several of those killed or injured in the attack.

When gunfire rang out, Beaton covered his wife's body with his own, told her he loved her and then went limp.