First responders recognized by Allen city leaders following first anniversary of outlet mall shooting

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The men and women who put on a uniform each day and rush toward danger say it’s not about acknowledgment.

But in the Allen city council chambers Tuesday, leaders couldn’t let the first anniversary of their city’s worst tragedy pass without recognizing the heroes who were there.

“They did their job, and they worked together as a team. The lives that could’ve been saved were saved,” announced Mayor Baine Brooks to the room.

The dozen or so gathered for the moment of recognition at the top of a city council meeting was just a small sampling of the hundreds of law enforcement officers, firefighters, and EMTs who responded to the Allen Premium Outlets on May 6, 2023.

An officer, who was at the mall on an unrelated call, responded to the gunfire, taking down a gunman who opened fire on shoppers, killing eight people.

Others rushed in to secure the scene and treat and transport patients. They went on to conduct a lengthy investigation to confirm the gunman acted alone before releasing shoppers and store staff who were locked down in backrooms across the 53-acre property.  

 “If you were that day, you’ll never forget it. For this community, it’s a pretty defining moment,” said Allen Fire Chief Jonathan Boyd.

Like many in his department, Boyd was on the ground that day.

He said the past year has been focused on caring for the responders who were there and evaluating what went right.

“It’s also a story of how a community can come together in a moment and a challenge,” he said.

Leaders said Tuesday’s recognition also served as a symbol of the city’s continued commitment to providing resources for its departments, purchases and policies influenced by the lessons learned by Boyd’s department and that of his police counterpart, Chief Steve Dye.

“We certainly hope that this never happens again in any community, but we’re certainly going to be ready for the fact that if it does happen again, how we can continue to learn from May 6 of last year and how we can continue to respond to it at a high level to keep our community safe,” said Chief Dye.

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