Waffle House Hero James Shaw Tells His Story to Ellen DeGeneres
James Shaw Jr., the 29-year-old Nashville resident who's now widely known as the "Waffle House Hero" after wrestling a gun away from a shooter at a Waffle House in Antioch, Tenn., appeared on the Ellen show Wednesday (May 2), and was given a couple of pretty cool surprises during his time on the show.
Shaw first off was asked by host Ellen DeGeneres to give a first-person account of what he went through. Although he's been interviewed extensively since the incident happened on April 22, Shaw still managed to chill the audience with his cool-headed assessment of the situation he was inadvertently thrown into.
Having shown up to the restaurant with his friend after a night out, he explained he was taken aback by loud noises. "We thought the dishes crashed to the ground, but it was actually gunshots, and after gunshots started it was kind of a lot of chaos," Shaw noted. "I looked back and saw a gentlemen right there at the entrance, and he was no longer alive."
Shaw was grazed by a bullet, but it had the effect of focusing rather than panicking him. "After that I just remember becoming totally relaxed and thinking, 'I have to keep an eye on [the shooter].'”
Shaw told DeGeneres that what he really wanted to convey was the fact that he was just a regular guy in an extraordinary situation. "The whole hero thing--I don’t have a problem with it, but I want you to know if that if you’re in that same situation, a regular guy did it," he explained. "Know you have that fire inside yourself."
DeGeneres came back with two unexpected rewards—a check for $225K, which was gathered together from an existing GoFundMe account plus various generous donations—as well as a visit from his favorite NBA player, Dwayne Wade, who shocked Shaw by striding on stage and praising him for his brave actions.
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