Excel mass shooting survivor tells story of being saved

Published: May. 25, 2016 at 10:48 PM CDT
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Dennis Britton has a leg full of scars to remind him of that day. "It was a regular day," he said.

February 25, 2016 was a day Excel Industries employees have burned into their memory. "I seen people start running out of the hallways yelling fire," Britton described.

Britton, a robot welder at the lawn mower manufacturer, went looking for flames, not a gunman. "As I was turning around, I got shot from behind," he said.

He describes the feeling as being electrocuted times a million. The ammo went through his backside, and out the center of his thigh, shattering his femur. "I looked up and there was blood all over the ground," said Britton. "I could see bullets hitting the ground in front of me."

Then, his buddy Josh Higbee grabbed him by the back of his shirt and dragged him to the front of the building. "That's when him and another guy were shot and killed."

Higbee, now a hero, to his co-worker and friend. "One of the guys that got shot and killed was a good friend of mine and he left behind a child," said Britton. "I have four kids of my own. I just had a knew one, so I can only imagine."

Gut-wrenching gratitude consumes his mind, even more now that he is back to work. "I'm constantly looking around," he said. "I can actually still hear people yelling fire and there's nobody around."

Disturbing flashbacks like many have who were left behind. "I didn't go to work that day and ask to get shot," said Britton.

The father of four felt the burn of the bullet that day. His family continues to feel the struggle of what comes after a mass shooting; a financial burden, physical rehabilitation, and hope for life to someday get back to normal again.

"I'm not looking for sympathy or a handout or anything else like that," said Britton. "It's just, people get into situations that they can't help and all they need is help."

Britton never spoke to media right after the shooting, but he said he wanted to share his story now to inspire others dealing with similar pain.