Let the killer’s name fade, we have a hero in Jon Meis

By Neal McNamara | June 6, 2014
APTOPIX Seattle Campus Shooting

Students from Seattle Pacific University gather outside in a spontaneous prayer circle after a church service was full, following a shooting on the campus of the university Thursday (AP).

You won’t find the name of the man who sought to commit mass murder at Seattle Pacific University on Thursday afternoon on this website – we won’t use it.

Instead, we will liberally use the name of the man who heroically stopped the Seattle Pacific University shooter using a combination of courage and pepper spray. His name is John Meis.

Jon Meis, according to published reports, is a senior engineering student at Seattle Pacific University from Renton. On Thursday afternoon, he was at work as a monitor inside Otto Miller Hall when that killer stepped inside.

We don’t know what Jon Meis did when the killer started shooting, but he was ready for action, as he always is. Ryan Salgado, Meis’ roommate at SPU, told the Seattle Times that Meis always carries pepper spray because he “likes to be prepared wherever he goes.”

When the shooter went to reload his weapon, Meis hit the killer with pepper spray, subduing him, and likely preventing the deaths of many other students.

Tragically, the gunman was able to fire a few shots, killing one student, and injuring at least two others.

Salgado described Meis to the Times as a quiet, private individual who is deeply Christian and loves the outdoors. According to his Facebook page, he’s also a fan of the NRA, and several gun makers like Mossberg.

“It doesn’t surprise me that he would step in to do something like that,” classmate Rebekah Ogimachi told the Times.

Hosts David Boze and Ben Shapiro praised Jon Meis. Unlike with other shootings, we have a hero to lift up rather than some demented killer.

“Heroism of individuals is what stops evil people from committing mass murder. No regulations can stop evil. Only good people can,” Shapiro said.

The killers usually “become the remembered names,” Boze said of mass shooters. According to reports, the Seattle Pacific University shooter was obsessed with recreating mass killings like Columbine.

“It’s a lot harder to build something than it is to destroy something. It’s the lazy individual’s way to get famous,” Boze continued. “If you want to go terrorize people, that’s easy. If you want to save people, that’s hard, and it requires a lot of discipline and skill.

“There are very few people who can rattle off the names of heroes, true heroes. And for some reason, evil people, in part because it’s so unusual, people recognize them. But I would prefer if their names just faded away. And rather swiftly than slowly.”

If the friends of Jon Meis are right, he may not want to be in the spotlight over this. But his fame might be a good trade for the alternative. All indications are that he was just doing his job, as a Christian and as a member of the SPU community.

“We are a community and we care for others,” SPU President Daniel Martin said. “Those that were involved did just that.”

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