Thousand Oaks Shooting

Borderline Bar Shooting Victim Telemachus Orfanos Had Survived Route 91 Shooting

Telemachus Orfanos, a 27-year-old U.S. Navy veteran, was one of 12 victims killed in a mass shooting on Nov. 7 at Borderline Bar and Grill, a country bar in Thousand Oaks, Calif., a little over a year after he had survived the Route 91 Harvest Festival shooting in 2017.

Outside her family's home, Orfanos' mother, Susan Schmidt-Orfanos, made an emotional plea for Congress "to pass gun control so no one else has a child that doesn't come home."

"My son was in Las Vegas with one of his friends and he came home. He didn't come home last night," Schmidt-Orfanos said. "And I don't want prayers, I don't want thoughts, I want gun control and I hope to God nobody else sends me more prayers. I want gun control. No. More. Guns."

The 12 victims of the Thousand Oaks shooting are Orfanos, Sgt. Ron Helus, Cody Coffman, Justin Meek, Dan Manrique, Mark Meza, Blake Dingman, Sean Adler, Noel Sparks, Jake Dunham, Kristina Morisette and Alaina Housley.

The bar had become a gathering place for some of the survivors of Route 91.

Chandler Gunn, a 23-year-old resident of Newbury Park, Calif., told the Los Angeles Times that his friend who works at Borderline was a Route 91 survivor.

"A lot of people in the Route 91 situation go here," Gunn told the Los Angeles Times. "There's people that live a whole lifetime without seeing this, and then there's people that have seen it twice."

Brendan Kelly, a Route 91 survivor and Marine Corps veteran, was a regular at Borderline and was inside the bar when the shooter entered. Kelly told ABC he immediately recognized the "pop pop" sound of the gun and began grabbing those around him, throwing them to the ground to keep them safe. Kelly and those he rescued made it to safety by escaping out a back exit.

Kelly said the bar had been a special place for those who were survivors of the shooting in Las Vegas.

"It's too close to home," Kelly told ABC. "Borderline was our safe space after, for lack of a better term, it was our our home for the probably 30 or 45 of us who are all from the greater Ventura County area who were in Vegas. That was our place where we went to the following week, three nights in a row just so we could be with each other."

The Thousand Oaks shooting is the 307th mass shooting in the U.S. this year.

On Oct. 1, 2017, 58 people were killed by a gunman at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas.