James Shaw Jr., the man hailed as a hero for his actions during a shooting at a Nashville-area Waffle House, has been reunited with his 4-year-old daughter.
Attending a vigil on Tuesday for the four victims of the shooting at a Nashville-area Waffle House, 29-year-old hero James Shaw Jr. reunited with his 4-year-old daughter, Brooklyn, for the first time since the tragic events that unfolded on Sunday, April 22. Holding her close, he addressed the crowd, saying that he’s “just a regular guy,” according to The Hill.
“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. “I actually tried to count the hairs on her eyelashes just because I was like, I almost didn’t see them anymore.”
Shaw has been dubbed a hero after disarming suspected shooter Travis Reinking at the Waffle House restaurant in Antioch, Tennessee. During the ordeal, Shaw suffered severe burns to his hands from grabbing the barrel of the AR-15 used in the shooting as well as a gunshot wound.
Shaw, who was grazed by a bullet during the shooting, said he took the chance out of a need to survive.
“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.”
He added that he did not want to be seen as a hero.
“I did that completely out of a selfish act. I was completely doing it just to save myself,” Shaw said, reports CNN. “I don’t want people to think that I was the Terminator or Superman or anybody like that.”
Following the shooting, the 29-year-old launched a GoFundMe page to help the victims of the shooting. While he only set a goal of $15,000, the fundraiser has already raised more than $130,000 in just two days.
The victims of the shooting were identified as 29-year-old Taurea C. Sanderlin, 20-year-old Joe R. Perez, 23-year-old Akilah Dasilva and 21-year-old DeEbony Groves. Groves. Groves and Dasilva were college students, while Perez was a local patron and Sanderlin was an employee of the Waffle House.
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.