8 Kroger mass shooting victims treated at Regional One, 3 remain in critical condition

Published: Sep. 24, 2021 at 11:22 AM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Doctors at Regional One Hospital said several patients remain in critical condition after Thursday’s mass shooting at Kroger in Collierville.

Eight of the 15 victims arrived at the level one trauma center, including one who died.

Three victims were rushed into surgery and three remain in critical condition Friday. One patient was treated and released.

“It was a team effort yesterday, which was key to smooth operation of such a tragedy as yesterday,” said Dr. Martin Croce, chief medical officer.

Trauma medical director Dr. Peter Fischer said the hospital has trained to respond to Thursday’s mass shooting, and the training worked well. He said there was an incredible response from medical facilities across the region.

In total, eight medical helicopters were dispatched to the grocery store but only two made the scene. Ultimately no patients were transported by air.

“When we plan for these mass casualty situations that are shooting-related the key is to get the patient here as quickly as possible,” said Fischer. “The ground ambulances were there. They did exactly what they were supposed to do.”

Fischer said while the response was incredible, they found room for improvement.

“We found some weaknesses,” he said. “One of the minor things we saw yesterday was how do we contact air traffic control when we have eight helicopters all heading to the same scene?”

The chief executive officer of Regional One Hospital, Dr. Reginald Cooper, commended his hospital’s staff, including those working at the time and the additional staff called in to assist.

“We have some of the finest trauma surgeons here at Regional One Health,” said Cooper. “We don’t want this tragedy to ever happen again, but we do want everyone to feel comfortable and confident that if we’re faced with any type of mass casualty, Regional One Health with the surgeons from the University of Tennessee are ready and willing and able to take care of these type of things.”

Victims also went to Methodist University Hospital in Collierville, Baptist Memorial Hospital in Collierville, Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis and St. Francis Hospital in Memphis. Several were treated and released.

Around 1:30 p.m. Thursday, a gunman entered Kroger near Poplar and Byhalia Road in Collierville, shooting 15 people before killing himself, according to police.

Investigators identified the shooter Thursday as Uk Thang, who worked for a third-party vendor at the grocery store. Police have not discussed a motive.

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