Refreshing: Media Praises Stephen Willeford, the Heat-Packing Hero Who Took On the Texas Church Shooter

Refreshing: Media Praises Stephen Willeford, the Heat-Packing Hero Who Took On the Texas Church Shooter

Refreshing: Media Praises Stephen Willeford, the Heat-Packing Hero Who Took On the Texas Church Shooter

Most of the time, when there’s a mass shooting, it feels like it’s the shooter who gets the most airtime and media focus as opposed to the victims or rescuers. Of course, it’s been no different this time around, in terms of the most recent shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas. Indeed, Devin Patrick Kelley has received a huge amount of media attention, namely because he was a sack of diarrhea. Articles about all of the bad things he did in his life flooded the media after the shooting: before he became a mass shooter, he cracked his infant stepson’s skull, beat up a dog, beat his ex-wife, solicited underage girls, bullied his classmates, made death threats to his superiors in the military, and escaped from a mental hospital. During the shooting, he shot crying babies point blank and went looking for victims pew-by-pew, shouting, “Everybody die!

Journalists and pundits have been fascinated by Kelley over the past few days. It’s like we’re all asking, “How can there be so much bad in just one person?”

But the media haven’t been solely focused on Kelley. They have also been fascinated by another player in the situation… a rescuer: Stephen Willeford, a retired plumber who lives less than a block away from the church where the shooting took place. Willeford performed an act of bravery and heroism that was truly remarkable: he ran into an active shooter situation with the intent to intervene.

Willeford – Image Credit: Courtney Sacco/Caller-Times

What’s shocking, though, is that the media, even the left-leaning media, seems to be doing a decent job acknowledging that Willeford was able to be a hero because he had a gun.

Seriously, check out some of these headlines and articles:

Washington Post: “Inside the Texas church, she thought it was her turn to die. Then outside, a man appeared”

Chicago Tribune: “A good man with a gun did what he had to do in Texas”

CNN: “‘Hero’ exchanged fire with gunman, then helped chase him down”

USA Today: “The man who took down the Texas church gunman”

The Guardian: “Man who opened fire on Texas church shooter hailed as ‘good Samaritan'”

The Telegraph: “Texas church massacre: Have-a-go-heroes shot and chased after Sutherland Springs gunman who killed 26”

Even Slate acknowledged that Willeford is a freakin’ boss: “The Heroism in the Sutherland Springs Shooting Does Not Validate the “Good Guy With a Gun” Argument”

Okay, so Slate injects their gun control agenda into their article, and I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for any left-leaning news conglomerates to, in the near future, admit the benefits of allowing good, law-abiding citizens to arm themselves… but still! The fact that these outlets are willing to characterize Willeford as a gun-toting civilian hero is a good thing.

It means certain folks in the media understand that this equation is at least possible: a gun + a good civilian = the potential for heroism.

Willeford is a walking, talking example of how the second amendment enables good, law-abiding citizens to stop active crimes, engage violent offenders, and protect innocents.

And man-oh-man, what a hero Stephen Willeford turned out to be. One can’t help but get goosebumps reading about what he did during the shooting. Check out this interview he did with Steven Crowder a few days ago where he gives an emotional, first-hand account of what happened:

Instead of locking himself in his house, Willeford took off running toward the gunfire, barefoot because he didn’t want to waste time. He loaded his gun as he ran, and found himself standing outside the church, twenty yards from the shooter. The coward was wearing kevlar, but Willeford still managed to hit him twice, without actually being shot himself. Then he flagged down a total stranger (fellow hero, Johnnie Langendorff) and chased the escaping shooter at high speeds until the shooter crashed and shot himself.

One victim’s account of Willeford’s involvement in the situation gave me the chills: in an article for CBS News, we can see the son of one of Kelley’s victims, 73 year old Farida Brown, describe what was going on in the church when Willeford showed up on the scene:

“”The shooter was making his rounds, and he ended up there and started shooting this lady multiple times,” David Brown told the station. “And the lady looked at my mom the whole time, and my mom was looking at her and telling her, ‘It’s OK, you’re going to go to heaven. You’re going to go to heaven,’ and then she knew it was her turn to be shot, and so she just started praying that God would take her soul to heaven.”

But Kelley turned his attention to another man with a gun, David Brown said. Stephen Willeford had run out of his house near the church barefoot, shot at Kelley and forced him to flee on a high-speed chase that ended in his death.”

It starts as a scene of unimaginable horror, but it morphs into a scene of rescue.

Because Stephen Willeford had a gun and didn’t hesitate to use it.

Willeford might have prevented Kelley from murdering more people, or maybe he just neutralized Kelley so the police didn’t have to. Regardless, he is, indeed, a hero.

I understand wanting criminal background checks, tighter regulations on certain, particularly dangerous models and attachments, mental health evaluations and the like. But I don’t understand how anyone could want a world where lawbreakers like Devin Kelley could illegally obtain a gun and shoot up a church while guys like Stephen Willeford would be down the block, unarmed and unable to do anything to intervene.

Image Credit: National Review

People who advocate for confiscations, buybacks, or other unreasonably stringent gun control measures have no idea what they’re asking for. Hopefully, we as a country won’t get to the point where the second amendment is threatened to that extent.

Time will tell. In the meantime, let’s just hope that all people, including pundits on the left, continue to see good, gun-wielding folks like Willeford for what they are: potential rescuers.

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  • parker says:

    All who advocate for unarming the law abiding citizens should be required by law to post a gun free sign on their front door.

  • GWB says:

    Kudos to a hero. Yeah, “hero” is overused nowadays, but it’s appropriate for Mr Willeford.

  • Scott says:

    I agree, it’s surprising that any of the MSM would tell the truth, thought not at all that Slate would say that the facts don’t mean anything…but the bottom line is, yes, Mr. Wileford is a HERO! not the fake kind we hear about in sports all the time, but a real, true, honest to God HERO! We should all be glad that there are men like him among us!

  • Penrod says:

    The photo of the smiling creep on top of a pile of confiscated guns reminds me of book burners. Fascist. Self-righteous. Condescending. Intolerant. Thugs with power.

    I hope the NRA honors Mr. Willeford and Mr. Langendorff at the next annual convention.

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