Stephen Willeford thanked God for giving him ‘the skills to do what needed to be done’
A former National Rifle Association instructor has come forward as the “good Samaritan” who shot and wounded the gunman who attacked the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas.
Stephen Willeford, 55, has been hailed as a hero for confronting the shooter and forcing him to flee, but he insisted in an interview Monday that “I’m no hero.”
“I think my God, my Lord protected me and gave me the skills to do what needed to be done, and I just wish I could have gotten there faster,” said Mr. Willeford told 40/29 News in Fort Smith-Fayetteville.
Mr. Willeford, 55, said his daughter alerted him to the gunshots, after which he removed his rifle from its safe, loaded his magazine, and ran across the street to the church. He didn’t even pause to put on his shoes.
The second good samaritan ‘Johnnie Langendorff’ pulled up to the intersection near First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, he saw the gunman in a shootout with anotherman.
Langendorff said the unidentified neighbor came up to him and told him they had to catch the suspect. The men took off in Langendorff’s vehicle.
“He briefed me quickly on what had just happened and said that we had to get him and so that’s what I did. We just take pursuit,” Langendorff said.
Special Report: Update On Texas Church Shooting
Twenty-six people were killed and 20 wounded at the small church Sunday in the worst mass shooting in Texas history. The youngest was 17 months old; the oldest was 77 years old.Click here for reuse options!
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