Just hours after prying a rifle out of the hands of suspected gunman Travis Reinking, James Shaw. Jr., with hands wrapped in bandages from burns and an arm suffering a graze from a bullet, launched a GoFundMe page to help the victims of the shooting. With a starting goal of just $15,000, Shaw’s fundraiser has now raised more than nine times that, the current amount donated now sitting at more than $175,000.
“My name is James Shaw Jr. I am creating this page to help the families of the victims from the shooting that took place at Waffle House in Antioch, Tennessee. Please take the time to donate as all of the proceeds will be given to the families. Thank you again for your generosity and blessings,” the 29-year-old wrote on the page, which has now seen donations from more than 5,000 people in just four days.
Shaw himself has been dubbed a hero following the April 22 shooting that left four dead, though he has expressed his reluctance to accept that title.
“I don’t really know, when everyone said that (I was a hero), it feels selfish,” Shaw told The Tennessean. “I was just trying to get myself out. I saw the opportunity and pretty much took it.”
“I don’t know if it has hit me yet as far as witnessing other people dying,” Shaw said. “It's kind of, it shouldn’t have happened. When I was in the ambulance to hospital I kept thinking that I’m going to wake up and it’s not going to be real. It is something out a movie. I’m OK though, but I hate that it happened.”
Currently, Shaw is just thankful to be alive and reunited with his 4-year-old daughter, Brooklyn.
“I’m just in a weird spot right now because I got a lot of sadness, but this is the first time I’ve seen her since the incident,” Shaw said while attending a vigil for the victims Tuesday night. “I actually tried to count the hairs on her eyelashes just because I was like, I almost didn’t see them anymore.”0comments
The 29-year-old managed to disarm suspect Travis Reinking during the shooting at the Nashville-area Waffle House, tossing the gun over the counter and preventing others in the restaurant from being injured.
Reinking managed to evade police for nearly 36 hours in the wooded areas of Antioch, Tennessee before eventually being taken into custody on April 23. He has since been booked into the Metro Jail on four murder warrants.