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Update on ILWU members wounded in Las Vegas: 'All those guys were heroes, they all protected their wives and each other'

Excerpts from an article in the Daily Breeze titled ‘Fundraising set for dockworker seen wounded on video in aftermath of Las Vegas shooting’:

ILWU Local 13 member Doug Cotter and family

ILWU Local 13 member Doug Cotter and family

Doug Cotter, 48, of Garden Grove, was one of three Port of Los Angeles dockworkers injured Sunday night when the shooting erupted at the Route 91 Harvest festival country music concert. Also injured were Mike Ljubic, 41, a crane mechanic, and Ambrose Russo, 36.

All three, members of Local 13 of the International Longshore and Warehouse ILWU, were attending the concert for the third year with their wives and other family members.

Cotter remains hospitalized following two surgeries. A bullet wound entered his right forearm, continued through the rib area and landed in his intestines, according to an account provided by his wife, Cherise, on the Doug Cotter GoFundMe page. He remains in critical but stable condition in intensive care, she wrote.

ILWU Local 13 member Mike Ljubic

ILWU Local 13 member Mike Ljubic

Ljubic, meanwhile, also remains hospitalized with injuries that were considered critical. He was shot in the back as he protected his wife. Posted on Mike Ljubic’s GoFundMe page Wednesday by Richard Anthony Cox was this update: “I came into work tonight and was told that Mike is breathing on his own and is in and out of consciousness. His good friend Dustin Favazza, and ILWU brother, told me that while he was awake for a moment he was able to recognize his beloved wife Michelle.”

While Ambrose Russo’s injuries were the least serious of the three, the traumatic experience has likely left a lasting emotional scar, his sister said.

Like the others in his group, Russo threw himself over his wife to protect her when everyone hit the ground as the indiscriminate shots were fired. He was treated for a leg wound and came home Monday. He will remain off work for at least a week but is expected to make a full recovery. Friends have started an Ambrose Russo GoFundMe page.

“All those guys were heroes, they all protected their wives and each other,” said Russo’s sister, Josephine Trusela.

Russo, the father of three, was shot in the right thigh just above the knee. The bullet entered from the back and exited the front, leaving him with some shrapnel wounds. He thought at first he’d only been grazed, she said.

“There were five or six people in the ambulance and he was holding (a bullet wound) for a lady who was shot in the neck,” Trusela said, calling her brother “one of the good guys.”

More at the Daily Breeze


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