Celebrities & Pop Culture

Ellen DeGeneres Surprised The Waffle House Shooting Hero With A Visit From His Favorite NBA Player

James Shaw Jr. was just given the surprise of a lifetime!

Ellen DeGeneres has a knack for giving to those who are deserving, and she went above and beyond for a young man who recently made news for his heroic actions.

James Shaw Jr. had gone to eat at a Waffle House in Nashville on April 22, when a gunman opened fire on all those inside the restaurant. He killed four people, but Shaw managed to wrestle the gun away before the shooter could do any further harm.

Shaw has since been dubbed a hero, and was given a hero’s welcome when he stopped by “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” in the wake of the incident.

james shaw waffle photo
Getty Images | Jason Davis

DeGeneres asked the man to share his story and talk about what it felt to be given such a title as “hero,” and his answer was truly inspiring.

“The whole ‘hero’ thing … I don’t have a problem with it it’s just that if you’re in that same situation I want you to know that a regular guy did it and I want you to emulate that same thing and know that you have that fire inside yourself,” Shaw told DeGeneres.

Watch the pair chat in the video below.

After the interview, it was time for DeGeneres to share the surprises she had in store for her guest. Shortly after the shooting incident, Shaw started a GoFundMe page for the victims’ families, which has raised more than $224,000 so far.

In turn, a journalist named Yashar Ali was so inspired by Shaw’s actions that he started a GoFundMe for Shaw and his 4-year-old daughter. In total, Ali helped to raise $205,000 for Shaw and his family. But, DeGeneres took it a step further and presented Shaw with $20,000 from Shutterfly. She then presented him with a check for $225,000, the total earnings raised by Ali’s fundraiser for him.

Then, as if that wasn’t incredible enough, DeGeneres had one other surprise up her sleeve: a visit from Shaw’s favorite NBA player, Dwyane Wade. Shaw’s reaction to seeing him was truly priceless:

Wade told Shaw he considers him a hero, as well.

“I look at you as an American hero,” Wade said. “When I sit down with my kids, and I sit down and talk to them about role models, who I want them to look up to, I can tell them to go look up James Shaw Jr.”

Clearly, both of these men share and admiration for each other, and it’s awesome that DeGeneres was able to bring them together!