James Shaw Jr. is the man credited with stopping alleged gunman Travis Reinking at the Nashville Waffle House shooting that happened early Sunday morning. Shaw has been resistant to being called a hero, but plenty of other people disagree. After the shooting, Shaw started a GoFundMe campaign to help the victims of the shooting, and now a fund has been started to help him as well.
NPR shares that James Shaw Jr. insists that he’s not a hero, just a regular person who was determined to stay alive. Shaw, 29, reportedly works as an AT&T technician and lives in Nashville with his 4-year-old daughter Brooklyn. James and a friend just happened to be at the Murfreesboro Pike Waffle House when shots were fired. Shaw intervened and stopped the shooting before additional people could be harmed.
Not only did Shaw stop the gunman, he also started a GoFundMe page hoping to raise money to help the families of the Waffle House shooting victims. Shaw set up the campaign with an initial goal of $15,000 and in just one day it had already topped $100,000. Journalist Yashar Ali decided that something should be done for Shaw as well, so he started a separate GoFundMe campaign specifically to help the Waffle House shooting hero.
James Shaw Jr., who wrested the gun away from the Waffle House shooter, visited 2 women who survived the shooting in the hospital.
"I’m glad that they’re still alive," he said, "but what I really want to see is when they’re back on their feet." https://t.co/rwQfgH6lj8
— The New York Times (@nytimes) April 23, 2018
Ali’s GoFundMe for Shaw has already topped $70,000 in less than a day, and TMZ reports that this one has garnered the attention of numerous celebrities. It seems that Sex and the City actress Kristin Davis, Two and a Half Men star Jon Cryer, Mindy Project actor Ike Barinholtz, and Busy Philipps of shows like Cougar Town and Dawson’s Creek have all contributed to the campaign honoring the Waffle House hero, as has conservative journalist Mike Cernovich.
Four people died as a result of the Waffle House shooting: Akilah DaSilva, Taurean Sanderlin, DeEbony Groves, and Joe Perez. In addition, WFTV notes that Sharita Henderson and Shanita Waggoner were injured in the incident. The Tennessean reports that Waffle House has pledged to support the families of the victims, noting that they will assist with funeral costs if needed. While the incident has sparked another round of conversations about gun violence in the United States, in this case, it’s also sparked a coming together of people anxious to honor and help both James Shaw Jr. and those who were injured or killed during the incident.
"I kind of made up my mind… that if it was gonna come down to it, he was gonna have to work to kill me": Hero customer James Shaw Jr. describes the moment he disarmed a gunman who killed 4 people at a Waffle House near Nashville https://t.co/uXRm31g4La pic.twitter.com/UJUL3C2Uhv
— CNN (@CNN) April 23, 2018
"I actually tried to count the hairs on her eyelashes just because I was like I almost didn't see you anymore": James Shaw Jr. held his 4-year-old daughter for the first time since he rushed the Waffle House shooter and ripped away his gun https://t.co/Lhu9849C6i pic.twitter.com/nCz9RunuC1
— CNN (@CNN) April 24, 2018