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Chiefs parade shooting total at 22 injured, with 3 patients in critical condition

 A stroller and trash left behind on at Union Station on Feb. 15, 2024, after a shooting the day before caused crowds to flee the Kansas City Chiefs victory parade.
Sam Zeff
KCUR 89.3
A stroller and trash left behind on at Union Station on Feb. 15, 2024, after a shooting the day before caused crowds to flee the Kansas City Chiefs victory parade.

Wednesday’s shooting at Union Station near the end of the Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl rally killed one person and injured at least 22 others.

Many victims have now been discharged, but three gunshot victims remain in critical condition.

Children’s Mercy Hospital, University Health (formerly Truman Medical Center) and Saint Luke’s Hospital all took in patients from the shooting.

Children’s Mercy received 12 patients from the rally; 11 were children ranging from 6 to 15 years old. Nine children were shot. Stephanie Meyer, the hospital's senior vice president of nursing, said all of them are expected to make a full recovery.

Three of the shooting victims are now in inpatient care at Children’s Mercy. All of the remaining nine victims have been discharged.

Saint Luke’s took in five patients at its Plaza location. Four patients walked in with minor injuries from fleeing the scene and were treated and released. The hospital’s one gunshot victim from the parade is still in critical condition.

University Health had staff at the rally who treated patients on the scene. The hospital also took in 12 patients from the incident — eight with gunshot wounds. Two patients are still in critical condition, but improving, and have had multiple surgeries.

Hospital officials say one is a younger man with a "90+ fatal injury," which means if 100 people came in with the same injury, 95 to 99 would die. The other is an older woman, who hospital staff are hopeful will move to stable condition and out of the ICU in the next day or two.

One other gunshot victim is in stable condition; the others have been discharged. University Health staff said patients that came into the hospital without gunshot wounds had injured extremities and some broken bones; they, too, have been discharged.

Dr. Erica Carney, the medical director of the Kansas City Fire Department's emergency medical services division, is also an emergency physician at University Health, and was on the scene of the shooting. Dr. Dustin Neel, a surgeon at the hospital, said she triaged patients quickly to get them to University Health — the closest hospital to Union Station — first, including the younger man still in critical condition.

"Had he not made it here as fast as he had, he might not be with us now," Neel said. "He was the first person here, and our mass casualty plan then went into effect and got him straight up to the operating room and we were able to stabilize him."

"You go into this business because you care about people, and our staff, while they did all this great work, I also want to reiterate that they're hurting, too," said Charlie Shields, CEO of University Health. "It means a lot to our team that this community has reached out and supported them."

Police had two people under 18 in custody for the shootings as of Wednesday afternoon. The prosecutor’s office hasnot yet filed charges against the suspects. Police released a third person after determining they were not involved.

Children’s Mercy has published resources for people impacted by the shooting, including when to seek help and how parents and caregivers can help children process trauma. The hospital also has in-person support sessions for families of patients and staff.

Dr. Stephanie Burrus, chief well-being officer at Children’s Mercy, said staff are traumatized from the event. Many who treated children with gunshot wounds have young children of their own that they couldn’t locate right away.

“We are all grieving and will grieve in different ways,” Burrus said. “Some are heartbroken today, some will be heartbroken next week, some will be in a month, and we have resources here to help them.”

Meyer, Children’s Mercy’s vice president of nursing, said that hospital staff prepare for incident’s like yesterday. She said the staff mobilized in a way they thought they’d “only have to practice for.”

Meyer says the hospital will help the children and their families make a full recovery now that all three children hospitalized with gunshot wounds are stable and expected to recover physically.

“That's just a first step,” Meyer said. “The next step is now the mental health pieces that will come after.”

Multiple Chiefs players have reached out to Children’s Mercy to assist the injured kids in some way. Meyer says the hospital has made contact with the players but is focusing on the patients and their families — arranging something with the team will come later.

If you believe your child may be at Children’s Mercy or injured, call the hospital at (816) 648-2590.

Copyright 2024 KCUR 89.3. To see more, visit KCUR 89.3.

Savannah Hawley-Bates