(WHDH/AP) — The wife of a Tennessee man killed by the Las Vegas shooter says her husband died because he saved her from being shot.

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Heather Gulish Melton told WZTV that her husband, Sonny Melton of Paris, Tennessee, was among the 50 killed Sunday night in the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history.

She says in a statement to the Nashville station that “he saved my life and lost his.”

“At this point, I’m in complete disbelief and despair. I don’t know what to say. Sonny was the most kind-hearted, loving man I have ever met,” the woman said.

Radio station WENK reports Melton was a registered nurse.

RELATEDLas Vegas shooter was retired, had no criminal record

Jeremy Butler, who says he has been best friends with Sonny Melton since he was 3, told the Paris (Tennessee) Post Intelligencer that Melton was shielding his wife from gunfire when he was fatally shot.

Butler said the couple got married about a year ago.

More than 500 people were injured and at least 58 were killed as Stephen Craig Paddock, 64, of Mesquite, Nevada, perched on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino unleashed a hail of bullets on an outdoor country music festival below

(Copyright (c) 2024 Sunbeam Television. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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