The show must go on for SXSW goers - KXXV-TV News Channel 25 - Central Texas News and Weather for Waco, Temple, Killeen |


The show must go on for SXSW goers


Less than 24 hours after a Killeen man killed two people and hurt dozens others, thousands of people still came to South by Southwest on Thursday.

"I mean everyone is definitely talking about it, it's on everyone's minds but everyone still wants to have a good time," Austin resident Matt Phebus said.

Phebus was with his girlfriend on Red River Street minutes after the crash. He says he saw a local musician who told him what happened.

"He was like there's dead people right up the road, and we were like what? And he's like this guy just drove through here and hit like 20 people and a few people are dead."

"It was frightening, it was freaky. I haven't seen anything like it before. So many cops, people were just walking around crying, you weren't sure if the people around you were hurt or not, it was a messed up scene for sure."

Phebus wasn't the only one affected by the tragedy. Many said they didn't want to think about it while others say it's a feeling of numbness. That's why several sought spiritual healing at a local church. About a football field away from a concert stage, many people prayed with a local pastor.

"We give thanks for the years that South by Southwest has not experience tragedy and we hope for many more years to next experience this again," associate pastor Katie Wright said. 

Those who came read scripture, prayed, and picked a flower before leaving. One man says that flower is a symbol of hope.

"A reminder that life is really fragile, you never know when it comes and goes," SXSW visitor Arthur Stuart said.

However, even with the tragedy, there's still thousands of people in downtown Austin. Phebus says that's because it just wouldn't be right to stay at home. That way the music never stops.

"The show must go on I guess, people want to see music. I think the worst thing you could do is just shut everything down. So it kind of goes against what the festival is about," Phebus said.

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