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Jason Aldean Hits The Stage One Week After Vegas Shooting, And Delivers Touching Tribute

SNL

In the wake of the tragic shooting in Las Vagas, in which a gunman opened fire on the crowd of the Route 91 Harvest Festival, taking the lives of 58 people and wounding over 500 more, a number of country musicians have taken the time to pay tribute to the lives that were lost.

Garth Brooks / Facebook

Garth Brooks posted a tribute to the victims of the shooting soon afterwards, commenting that "I'm very proud of how the audience handled itself. People were laying down on people to protect them. Just...character flows through country music. All our love to the victims and the victims' families. All our love to the bands and crews."

People

Most notable however, has been the outpouring of emotions from Jason Aldean, who was performing at the festival when the shooting began. His pregnant wife Brittany was present as well, and recounts that “We were the lucky ones. I can’t put into words the pain and heartache we feel for the ones who are no longer with us."

People

Though he already previously made a statement about the incident, Aldean used his appearance on Saturday Night Live on Oct. 8th to comment further on the shooting, as well as to pay tribute to the late Tom Petty, who passed away on Oct. 2nd.

His tribute is very touching...

Instead of the show's usual cold opening, Oct. 8th's SNL episode began with Aldean speaking directly to the camera with his band behind him, stating that

“Like everyone, I’m struggling to understand what happened that night, and how to pick up the pieces and start to heal. So many people are hurting. There are children, parents, brothers, sisters, friends — they’re all part of our family. So I want to say to them: We hurt for you, and we hurt with you."

He also made a plead for the country to come together, saying that “When America is at its best, our bond and our spirit, it’s unbreakable.” He then followed this with a performance of Tom Petty's "I Won't Back Down," one of the late singer's most beloved hits.

It's a pretty touching tribute.