The heroes who stopped Texas gunman, David Kelley, lived quiet, unassuming lives until yesterday.
Stephen Willeford, a local plumber, saved numerous lives by wounding, then pursuing the murderous Kelley in a dramatic chase thanks to another good Samaritan.
Clad in tactical gear and heavily armed, Kelley stormed the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, just southeast of San Antonio, leaving 26 parishioners dead.
As word of the shooting spread through the town of 400, Willeford rushed to the church with his assault rifle and exchanged rounds with Kelley, whose criminal record kept him from owning firearms. One of Willeford’s bullets penetrated Kelley’s armor plates.
An injured Kelley staggered to his car and sped away as Willeford flagged down a passerby, Johnnie Langendorff, and jumped in the bed of his truck. Langendorff engaged the suspect in a high-speed pursuit, reaching 95 mph, as Willeford fired at the mass killer.
Eventually, the gunman came to a stop. Willeford hopped down and cautiously approached the vehicle where the murderer’s lifeless body sat slumped over in the driver’s seat.
It remains unclear if Willeford mortally wounded the gunman or Kelley, sensing his imminent demise decided to take his own life. Regardless, Willeford and Langendorff saved countless lives through their selfless act of heroism.