Las Vegas shooting victim's wife shares heart-wrenching story of husband's heroic act

Three days after losing her husband during Sunday night's mass shooting in Las Vegas, Heather Melton is speaking out to ensure the world knows how incredible of a person Sonny Melton was.

"It was a love that I had never experienced before," Heather Melton told TODAY host Savannah Guthrie. "It was the kind of love that fills you up every single day. We loved being together and people felt how much we loved each other."

Heather and Sonny were celebrating their one-year anniversary together at the Route 91 Harvest Festival on Sunday night when 64-year-old Stephen Paddock opened fire from the 32nd floor of his Mandalay Bay Hotel room window, killing 59 concertgoers and injuring over 500 before turning the gun on himself.

These are the victims of the Las Vegas shooting: 

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Victims of the Las Vegas shooting
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Victims of the Las Vegas shooting
Chris Roybal of Southern California, was a Navy veteran who served in Afghanistan, ABC News said. He was 28.

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Sonny Melton (pictured right) is seen with his wife Heather, who survived the shooting.

(Photo via Heather Gulish Melton)

Quinton Robbins, 20, is described by his aunt as "the most kind and loving soul."

(Photo via Kilee Wells Sanders/Facebook)

Jordan McIldoon (left), 23, of British Columbia, was confirmed dead by his parents as well as fellow concert-goer Heather Gooze, who said McIldoon died in her arms. 

(Photo via Facebook)

Victim of the October 1, 2017 mass shooting at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Jordan McIldoon, is seen in this undated social media photo obtained by Reuters October 3, 2017. Social media/Handout via REUTERS

Jassica Klymchuk, a single mother of 4, was visiting Las Vegas from Alberta with her fiancé. 

(Photo via Facebook)

Lisa Romero worked as a secretary at her local high school in Gallup, New Mexico. 

(Photo via Facebook)

Denise Burditus, of West Virginia, was attending the concert with her husband, and died in his arms. 

(Photo via Facebook)

Rachael Parker was a records technician for the Manhattan Beach Police Department in California, she was 33. 

(Photo via Twitter)
Susan Smith worked for the Simi Valley Unified School District in California.

(Photo via Facebook)

Adrian Murfitt was a commercial fisherman in Anchorage, Alaska, the Alaska Dispatch News reported. He was 35.

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

John Phippen of Santa Clarita, California, was a father of five, grandfather of one and owned a remodeling and repair company. 

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Angie Gomez was a 2015 graduate of Riverside Polytechnic High School in California.

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Victim of the October 1, 2017 mass shooting at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Angie Gomez, is seen in this undated social media photo obtained by Reuters October 3, 2017. Social media/Handout via REUTERS

Dana Gardner (pictured left) was attending the concert with her daughter, according to a GoFundMe page set up in her memory.

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Rhonda LeRocque attended the concert with her husband, and their 7-year-old daughter, who were not injured, according to the Boston Globe.

(Photo via Facebook)
Jenny Parks was a wife, mother to two young children and a teacher, according to a GoFundMe account set up in her memory.

(Photo via Facebook)
Nesya Tonks was the mother of three boys, according to a GoFundMe set up by her employeer, Technologent.

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Hannah Ahlers is survived by her husband and three children.

Photo Credit: Facebook

Carrie Barnette, 34, was in Las Vegas for a friends 30th birthday party.

Photo Credit: Nicole Johnson

Sandy Casey had taught special education for 9 years at the Manhattan Beach Unified School District. 

Photo Credit: Manhattan Beach Unified School District

Victim of the October 1, 2017 mass shooting at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Sandy Casey, is seen in this undated social media photo

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Thomas Day Jr. is survived by his four children who attended the Route 91 Harvest Festival with him. 

Photo Credit: Thomas Day Jr./Facebook

Charleston Hartfield, 34, was an off-duty Las Vegas police officer, youth football coach, and military veteran. Our… https://t.co/UafOdLrcFz

Bailey Schweitzer was only 20 years old and had just started working at Infinity Communications and consulting as a receptionist 7 months ago. 

Photo Credit: Infinity Communications and Consulting

Victim of the October 1, 2017 mass shooting at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Bailey Schweitzer, is seen in this undated social media photo obtained by Reuters October 3, 2017. Social media/Handout via REUTERS
Victim of the October 1, 2017 mass shooting at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Melissa Ramirez, is seen in this undated social media photo obtained by Reuters October 3, 2017. Social media/Handout via REUTERS
Victim of the October 1, 2017 mass shooting at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Jack Beaton, is seen in this undated social media photo obtained by Reuters October 3, 2017. Social media/Handout via REUTERS
Christiana Duarte had begun working at her first full-time job since graduated college, according to the Los Angeles Times.

(Photo via Facebook)
Stacee Etcheber was a mother and wife to a San Francisco Police Dept. officer.

(Photo via Facebook)
Jennifer Topaz Irvine was a family law attorney based in San Diego, according to CBS News.

(Photo via Facebook
A fourth Kern County resident has passed away: Family of 27 y.o. Kelsey Meadows, confirm that she is the fourth Ker… https://t.co/DdzsCXbBh5
Calla Medig was described as a kind-hearted young woman with a beaming smile, according to CBC News in Canada.

(Photo via Facebook)
Cameron Robinson (pictured right) was an amazing friend, son, brother, uncle, cousin, coworker and boyfriend known for his love of cooking and dancing, according to a fundraising page set up in his memory.

(Photo via GoFundMe)
Family tells me Kurt Von Tillow from Cameron Park was killed in #LasVegasShooting. Say he ❤️ his country. Always wo… https://t.co/w7Ndiq5YlO

Bill Wolfe Jr. was a loving husband and a wrestling coach in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania.


(Photo via GoFundMe)

A fundraising account set up for Dorene Anderson (pictured top left) described her as a loving wife, mother, sister, aunt and friend.

(Phot via GoFundMe)

Steve Berger was celebrating his 44th birthday with a group of friends, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

(Photo via EFS Advisors)

Tara Roe Smith was the mother of two young sons, according to the Canadian Press. She was reportedly separated from her husband, Zach, during the shooting.  

(Photo via GoFundMe)
Erick Silva has been identified as one of the victims in the #LasVegasShooting https://t.co/uv3taTQCqU

Brennan Stewart had a love for music and his family requested that the funds raised from a GoFundMe account set up in his honor be used for a local youth organization that is centered around the arts.

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Michelle Vo was attending her first country music concert, according to the San Jose Mercury News.


(Photo via Facebook)

Heather Alvarado loved to travel with her three children and her husband, according to a statement released by the Cedar City Police Department to local media.

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Denise Cohen was a mother of two who was attending the concert with her boyfriend.

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Victim of the October 1, 2017 mass shooting at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Jordyn Rivera, is seen in this undated social media photo.

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Candice Bowers was a single mother of three and is described her as a superhero who loved country music; she was ki… https://t.co/9qh6ARaN2I
Andrea Castilla was celebrating her 28th birthday with her sister, boyfriend and her sister's fiancee, according to a GoFundMe page set up by her family.

(Photo via Facebook)
Austin Davis was considered a friend to all, according to a fundraising site set up in his memory. He was 29.

(Photo via GoFundMe)
Chris Hazencomb saved his friend's life by shielding her, the Ventura County Star reported. He was 44.

(Photo via GoFundMe)
Victor Link, 52, “I could type for hours saying how great of a man you were and how everyone loves you so so much.”… https://t.co/qu3fOQ3jY7
Lisa Patterson was a loving mother, wife and donated countless hours to her community, according to a GoFundMe account. She was 46.

(Photo via GoFundMe)
Rocio Guillen Rocha was still on maternity leave after giving birth to her fourth child six weeks ago, NPR reported. She was 40.

(Photo via GoFundMe)
Derrick "Bo" Taylor served the Ventura Conservation Camp for decades according to statement by the California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation. He was 56.

(Photo via Facebook)
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Heather told TODAY that when gunshots first rang out at the venue, she wanted to hit the ground, but Sonny refused to let her.

"I said, 'Let's get down,' and he said, 'No, we'll get trampled, let's go,' and he wrapped his arms around my back," she told Guthrie. "And as we started to run, I felt him get shot in the back and we fell to the ground."

"I know he saved my life."

Heather, an orthopedic surgeon at Henry County Medical Center in Tennesee, said she tried to perform CPR on her husband on the field while there were still bullets landing all around them.

Eventually, when gunfire ceased, a good Samaritan rushed in to help the pair, throwing Sonny over his shoulder and placing him in the back of a pick-up truck with two other victims.

Heather said that the kind stranger performed CPR on her dying husband throughout the entire ride to the hospital, but by the time they arrived, it was too late to save him.

Heather described her late husband, who was a nurse at the same hospital she worked at, as "the most sincere, warm-hearted, caring person" with an infectious smile that made other people believe he genuinely cared about them.

Although Heather told TODAY that sharing her story was impossibly hard, she said she refused to let a negative person outshine the good souls that were lost.

"I wanted the world to know how good Sonny was,'' she said. "My son said to me, 'Mom, Sonny's an international hero,’ and I said, 'Well, he was always our hero before this happened.'"

RELATED: See monuments lit up in remembrance of the Las Vegas victims: 

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Buildings and monuments lit up for Las Vegas shooting victims
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Buildings and monuments lit up for Las Vegas shooting victims
A picture taken on October 2, 2017 shows the Tel Aviv city hall lit up in the colours of the American national flag to honour the victims of an attack in the American city of Las Vegas, at the Rabin Square in Tel Aviv. A gunman has opened fire on a music festival in Las Vegas, leaving at least 20 people dead and more than 100 injured. Police have confirmed that one suspect has been shot. The investigation is ongoing. / AFP PHOTO / JACK GUEZ (Photo credit should read JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images)
NASHVILLE, TN - OCTOBER 02: The Ascend Amphitheater and Korean Veterans Memorial Bridge in downtown Nashville, Tenn. are lit up in red, white and blue after a vigil for the victims of the mass shooting in Las Vegas on October 2, 2017 in Nashville, Tennessee. At least 58 people were killed and 500 wounded at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas Sunday night. (Photo by Joe Buglewicz/Getty Images)
Las Vegas Boulevard lights-up with with signs for the victims and first responders after a mass shooing at the Route 91 Harvest Country Music Festival in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., October 2, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake
The Eiffel Tower is pictured in Paris before switching off lights on October 2, 2017 in tribute to the victims of the attacks in Las Vegas and Marseille. At least 50 people were killed and hundreds wounded on October 1, when a gunman opened fire on a concert in Las Vegas in the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history. Earlier on October 1, a man knifed two young women to death outside the main train station in Marseille, France's second-biggest city. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for both attacks via the jihadists' propaganda outlet Amaq, which said they were carried out by its 'soldiers'. It did not provide any evidence for either claim. / AFP PHOTO / LUDOVIC MARIN (Photo credit should read LUDOVIC MARIN/AFP/Getty Images)
The lights of the Eiffel Tower in Paris are switched off on October 2, 2017 in tribute to the victims of the attacks in Las Vegas and Marseille. At least 50 people were killed and hundreds wounded on October 1, when a gunman opened fire on a concert in Las Vegas in the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history. Earlier on October 1, a man knifed two young women to death outside the main train station in Marseille, France's second-biggest city. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for both attacks via the jihadists' propaganda outlet Amaq, which said they were carried out by its 'soldiers'. It did not provide any evidence for either claim. / AFP PHOTO / Zakaria ABDELKAFI (Photo credit should read ZAKARIA ABDELKAFI/AFP/Getty Images)
Eiffel Tower goes dark to honor Las Vegas and Marseille victims. https://t.co/GTQMTTqMdu https://t.co/jBIxkMJRjJ
Empire State Bldg remains dark for victims of Las Vegas shooting. Shines orange halo for gun violence awareness. https://t.co/FDJex1Pp4H
The High Level Bridge will be red and white for Canada and red, white and blue for Las Vegas, alternating every 10… https://t.co/N7OhlhkoQF
VIDEO: Part of the @space_needle goes dark to honor the victims of the Las Vegas shooting. #VegasStrong @komonews https://t.co/w0pSXbZcJ7
Empire State Bldg remains dark for victims of Las Vegas shooting. Shines orange halo for gun violence awareness. https://t.co/FDJex1Pp4H
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