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This heroic son of Muslim immigrants saved countless lives during Orlando shooting

Nick Duffy June 27, 2016
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A medic who treated victims of the Pulse gay club shooting in Orlando has opened up about the horrific experience.

49 people died and more than 50 were injured in the shooting, when a gunman who swore allegiance to ISIS opened fire inside the gay club, which was holding a Latin night. The victims were disproportionately Latino LGBT people.

One of the doctors called to the scene, Dr Joseph Ibrahim, spoke about the tragedy – two weeks on.

Dr Ibrahim, the son of Muslim immigrants, was director of the trauma medical imot where many of the victims were treated.

Speaking to the BBC for a Panorama special, he recalled: “There was a lot of blood. It was absolutely like a war zone.

“And patients just kept coming in. And these were massive injuries, abdominal, wounds, chest wounds, that he must have been very close, with an assault rifle.”

He added: “They have a bunch of memorials set up, and seeing the friends and family coming together and crying over someone you were potentially working on, that really tears at you.

“We had eight pass away in the emergency department and one on the way to the operating room.

“You had to stop with one patient, so that you can move on to the next one – that you could, potentially, save.

“That was the hardest part, saying ‘OK, we’ve done everything’.

“I can still see some of their faces. I still run through it in my mind. Did I do everything I could?

“Talking to others that there were there, you just wish you had a few more moments.”

Panorama: The Orlando Nightclub Massacre Monday airs tonight at 8:30 PM on BBC One

More: Gay, LGBT, Muslim, Orlando, Orlando Massacre, Sexuality, US

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