May 9, 2019 – In Breaking News – USA TODAY
As shots fired inside a synagogue outside San Diego last month, Lori Gilbert Kaye, 60, put herself in between the shooter and the rabbi and died as a result.
Riley Howell, 21, charged a gunman who burst last week into a University of North Carolina-Charlotte lecture room carrying a pistol. He too lost his life to save others.
And Tuesday inside a STEM school in Denver, Kendrick Castillo, 18, lunged at a fellow student who had pulled a gun in class, giving his classmates time to take cover.
He was the lone student killed in the attack.
(Two students are accused of killing a classmate and wounding eight others inside a Colorado charter school. Kendrick Castillo, 18, died in the attack inside STEM School Highlands Ranch Tuesday. Some students tell CBS News three classmates, including Castillo, tried to take down the gunmen. Courtesy of CBS This Morning and YouTube. Posted on May 8, 2019.)
Mass shootings are now a nightmarish norm in the USA, and yet the tragedies often have a common thread of heroism in them as well – people whose heralded bravery and decisive actions helped stop the attacks and probably saved lives, sometimes at the expense of their own.
The nation’s three latest mass shootings, each occurring over an 11-day span beginning at the Chabad of Poway temple on April 27, have given us our latest heroes – just like shootings at a high school in Parkland, Florida, a Waffle House in Nashville, Tennessee, a synagogue in Pittsburgh and elsewhere did last year.
(There was fury among students at a vigil for the victims of the Colorado school shooting Wednesday night, and as politicians and gun control activists addressed the crowd, the students stormed out of the school gym. They claimed the real issue is not gun control but mental health and held their own vigil outside using the lights from their cellphones. Brendan Bialy’s friend, Kendrick Castillo, was killed as they both tried to overpower the shooter. “He was a hero,” Bialy said. Courtesy of Inside Edition and YouTube. Posted on May 9, 2019.)
What made these ordinary citizens, in some cases kids, risk their lives for others?
And what is it that will make future heroes undoubtedly do the same?
Psychologists point to a wide range of characteristics, including patterns of taking risks and helping others, to help explain how some people can be so brave.
“You know, our life is all we’ve got,” said Frank Farley, a psychology professor at Temple University who has studied heroism.
“To put it on the line or take risks where you can lose your life for others is an astounding and profound human behavior.”
The most recent act of heroism in the nation’s series of deadly shootings came from Castillo, who just days before he was set to graduate from STEM School Highland Ranch rushed a gunman who was barking orders to stay in place and not move.
(Brendan Bialy said he was sitting in class at STEM School Highlands Ranch on Tuesday afternoon when another student showed up late and pulled out a gun. What happened next, Bialy said, was an “immediate, non-hesitation jump into action.” Courtesy of Denver7 – The Denver Channel and YouTube. Posted on May 8, 2019.)
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