FT. SILL (KFDX/KJTL) — Pat Reynolds said he has years of experience working as a backstage technician for the McMahon Auditorium, but recently he had what he calls a very scary encounter.
“Initially it was panic because initially I couldn’t figure out what was going on,” Reynolds said. “I had set the shell up numerous times, and I just couldn’t figure out why it was coming down, so it was a shock.”
Reynolds happened to be working backstage at the auditorium the same day the 77th Army Band was having a performance. While switching out the walls to prepare for the next performance, he ran into some trouble.
“Next thing I know, the shell is coming at me, and I thought for a split second I could stop the shell from falling, and this is probably a thousand or fifteen-hundred pound unit at least,” Reynolds said. “And in another split second, I realized I was in trouble and needed to get out of there, but the shell came down and caught me, and I was underneath it.”
Luckily for Reynolds, the 77th Army Band was still nearby packing up things from their performance when three brave soldiers – Staff Sergeant Kenneth Goss, Sgt. Karsten Burns and Corporal Nicole Mouzon – sprang into action.
“My initial feelings were just shock and then immediately like ‘What can I do to help?'” Cpl. Mouzon of the 77th Army Band said. “I was very worried and very scared for Mr. Reynolds.”
Corporal Mouzon said together, the three were able to free Reynolds in no time.
“From there we started to hear screaming, and so when we looked over, we saw the sound wall – which was like a two-story wall – was coming down on Mr. Reynolds, so we immediately sprang into action and lifted the wall off of him once it fell,” Mouzon said.
Reynolds said their actions meant the world to him.
“Once I finally regrouped and recognized what was going on, of course I was extremely grateful that the army band guys and ladies had enough strength to lift that thing up a little bit for me to get underneath it because I was certainly trapped,” Reynolds said.
“We are in the military as bandsmen, but we’re still soldiers, so definitely what we learn for basic marksmanship and combat does come into play for incidents like these,” Mouzon said.
Reynolds said thanks to those three soldiers, he’s doing just fine after a situation that could’ve been a lot worse.
Reynolds didn’t suffer any life threatening injuries from the incident. He said he just pulled a couple of muscles and was a little sore.