Celebs are raising money for the man who took down the Waffle House shooter


On April 22, James Shaw Jr. tackled and wrestled a gun away from an armed shooter inside a Waffle House in Antioch, Tennessee. The shooter managed to kill four people and injure several others before Shaw, 29, grabbed the assault rifle away from him.

Shaw, an electrician, humbly claims he’s not a hero. But that hasn’t stopped many people, including some major celebrities, from raising money online for him and his family.

Denying his “hero” status, Shaw told reporters that he was just trying to save his own life.

“I did that completely out of a selfish act,” he said. “I was completely doing it just to save myself.”

Shaw suffered a second-degree burn on his hand from grabbing the barrel of the rife and also has a graze wound on his arm from a bullet.

Waffle House photo
Getty Images | Jason Davis

Whatever motivated him to disarm the gunman truly doesn’t matter. What’s important is that he saved lives — and even risked his own — by doing so.

A journalist named Yashar Ali was so inspired by Shaw’s brave efforts that on April 24, he took it upon himself to start a GoFundMe page in honor of Shaw and his 4-year-old daughter.

“I normally don’t get involved directly in these matters, but James’ grace has inspired me to start this page to give him the support I feel he deserves,” Ali wrote on GoFundMe. “According to news reports, James has a 4-year-old daughter. Perhaps this money can be used for her college fund or some other education related expense. But I’d be just as happy if James used some of this money to take his family on a nice vacation.”

Lots of people want to support Shaw to thank him for his bravery. According to TMZ, celebrities such as Jon Cryer, Kristin Davis, Busy Philipps, Ike Barinholtz and Natasha Ziff have donated.

kristin davis photo
Getty Images | Matt Winkelmeyer

Davis tweeted about her donation:

“Star Wars” actor Mark Hamill tweeted his support of Shaw’s “hero” status as well:

Waffle House tweeted that it is working on a way to thank Shaw to “accurately express [its] appreciation”:

In addition to Shaw’s own GoFundMe page, you can also donate to the GoFundMe page he set up for the families of the victims of the shooting.

“Please take the time to donate as all of the proceeds will be given to the families,” he wrote. “Thank you again for your generosity and blessings!”

Thank you, James Shaw, not only for your heroism but for using your moment in the public eye to encourage people to help others.

RELATED: This dad saves his children with a lightning-fast response.

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About the Author
Augusta Statz
I have a B.F.A. in Writing from the Savannah College of Art and Design. I’m an avid writer with a genuine sense of curiosity. I feel the best way to absorb the world around you is through fashion, art and food, so that’s what I spend most of my time writing about.

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