"We would go to Borderline together".
Dean labeled Helus, who was set to retire next year, a "hero"; Helus was shot several times and died at an area hospital early Thursday morning.
As we reported, Long served in Afghanistan from 2010 to 2011 as a decorated member of the Marines.
According to the Pentagon, Long served in the Marine Corps from August 2008 to March 2013.
"He had ideal form", bar patron Teylor Whittler told Fox News.
Numerous people inside the Borderline had also been at the Route 91 Harvest event previous year, according to a local resident, Gaby, whose friend is a bartender at the Borderline.
"The fact that he was the first in the door doesn't surprise me at all", said fellow Ventura County Sheriff's Department Sgt. Eric Buschow of Sgt. Ron Helus.
"The first thing I said was 'Please don't drink and drive.' The last thing I said was 'Son, I love you",' he said.
"We're going to pursue the leads that develop from that evidence, wherever they take us, to identify any possible motivation, paint a picture of the frame of mind of the subject, identify any possible radicalization", Delacourt said Thursday.
He said he and others smashed their way out of the bar onto a balcony and then jumped down to safety.
Sparks was a gifted dancer and artist, her friend Sarah Penrose said.
He recalled their last conversation as the younger man was leaving for Borderline: "I talked to him last night before he headed out the door". Gunshots were heard even as officers were responding to the incident. Earlier he had described it as "a horrific scene in there". It appears that Long then shot other security workers and employees inside and opened fire further inside the club, Dean said. He suffered from PTSD.
Under the name "doorkicker03", Long said he was an infantry machine gunner while in the Marine Corps for 4½ years, and was an instructor in Okinawa in Japan. The weapon holds 10 rounds and one in the chamber, but the gunman's weapon had an extended magazine that is illegal in California, so it's unknown how many rounds the weapon held. "I tried to pull down as many people as I could", he said.
"He shot a lot, at least 30 times".
"When (he) started to reload, that's when we got people out of there and I didn't look back", Wennerstron said.
TV footage showed SWAT teams surrounding the bar, with distraught revelers milling around and using their cell phones as lights from police cars flashed. That shooting came days after a gunman was suspected of killing two black patrons of a Kentucky supermarket after he apparently failed to get inside a black church. A sheriff's deputy, 12 attendees and the gunmen were killed.
But the shooting at the bar in Thousand Oaks, California, has yet again placed a spotlight on businesses considered soft targets.
Trump ordered flags to be flown at half-staff at public buildings and grounds.
The presence of police officers among the crowd recalls the Las Vegas shooting in October 2017, when many first responders were enjoying the Route 91 Harvest country music festival when a gunman began firing from a nearby hotel.