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Waffle House Hero Who Wrestled Gun From Shooter Is Raising Money For Victims

Shaw had a fundraising goal of $15,000, which has already been exceeded many times over.

By Gina Tron

First he saved the lives of terrified patrons during a Waffle House shooting. Now he's raising money for the victims.

James Shaw Jr., who wrestled an assault-style rifle from the gunman who killed four people Sunday in Nashville, has raised nearly $100,000 by Tuesday morning for victims and their families.

Shaw, who walked away with minor injuries, set up a GoFundMe campaign only hours after the Waffle House attack. He had a fundraising goal of $15,000, which has been exceeded several times over by more than 2,500 donors.

"My name is James Shaw Jr. I am creating this page to help the families of the victims from the Shooting that took place at Waffle House in Antioch, TN," he wrote on the page. 

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

Shaw also received his own GoFundMe page, called "Help The Waffle House Hero," which freelance journalist Yashar Ali set up Monday. It was set to reach its $50,000 goal Tuesday morning.

"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 the page, saying all funds will go directly to Shaw.

Shaw, an electrician technician for AT&T who has a 4-year-old daughter, has downplayed being hailed as a hero for his actions. 

"I was just trying to get myself out. I saw the opportunity and pretty much took it," he told The Tennessean.

Police said Travis Reinking, 29, opened fire in the restaurant with an AR-15, killing three customers and one employee and also wounding two people. The slain victims have been identified as Joe R. Perez, 20;  Akilah Dasilva, 23; DeEbony Groves, 21; and Taurean C. Sanderlin, 29. All lived in or near Nashville. 

Police captured Reinking on Monday after a daylong manhunt. He has been charged with four counts of criminal homicide and is being held on $2 million bond. His motive for the attack is unknown.

[Photos: Getty Images; GoFundMe screengrab]

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