Man recounts being within feet of gunman during first shots

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — For the first time, 2 NEWS is hearing from a man who came within feet of the gunman in the Oregon District when he first opened fire.

“It was just like unreal, like a horror movie or something like that,” recounts Dana Friendly. “I could see his mask and I could see his rifle.”

Dana Friendly was in the Oregon District early Sunday morning when the first shots were fired.

“Through the gates, I could see sparks, you know, fly up,” describes Dana. “So I initially thought that, you know, might’ve been some firecrackers or something. Somebody being silly.”

But what Dana heard were gunshots.

Surveillance video shows Dana standing outside the patio gates of Blind Bob’s. When the shooter ambushes the area, Dana takes off running. He ran into Blind Bob’s, through the bar, out the back and down the alley.

“From the time I saw him and I saw his rifle, and from the time that I actually got into Blind Bob’s safe, it seemed like it was a five minute, you know, it just was like slow motion and everything,” says Dana.

It all happened in a matter of seconds, but Dana says he saw into the shooter’s eyes.

“He had the mask on, like, it was a square little opening, clear opening. I saw his eyes and he looked angry. He did look like he was mad as hell,” describes Dana.

A barrage of bullets sprayed into the crowd on Fifth Street sending people literally running for their lives. Police took the gunman down right in front of Ned Peppers before he could ever make it inside the bar.

“He had an easy kill if he wanted to,” says Dana, as he describes how close he came to the gunman. “I’m very blessed. You know I consider myself lucky. More blessed than anything.”

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