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A doctor who fought a gunman, which is remembered as a microcosm of kindness

He was known to everyone as Dr. John, a quiet and calm doctor who teaches children in kung fu and encourages them to learn self-defense between patient visits. So, for John Chen to spend his last moments and save others, Southern California Mostly elderly Taiwanese churches, including Chen’s recently widowed mother.

The two 52-year-old fathers were known for doing everything they could to protect people. He was so worried about the increase in mass shootings that he took a safety course on Sunday to prepare for a situation that would have killed him.

Erica Triplet, Chen’s office manager, said: “It doesn’t surprise any of us. Dr. Chen illustrated what he was built for โ€” his hero who saved so many people throughout his career, not just that church. Principle.

Family and sports medicine doctors are like a family to the staff, and he encouraged them to learn kungfu, believing that it was important for people to know self-defense, his friends and colleagues said. .. He also learned how to handle a gun for the same reason.

According to active shooter experts, his preparation, combined with Chen’s gentle propensity, may have shown him a tendency to act heroically. Most people in such situations freeze.

“”people Do not rise to the level of opportunity. They fall to the level of training they have, “said active shooter expert Chris Glorunek. He believes that such training should be as common as evacuation drills. “Obviously this man as a doctor was inoculated (to deal with) bad things, from the bones sticking out of someone’s arm to the tragic events that happened in the church. Orange County.. “

Authorities said they saved dozens of lives at a congregation at the Irvine Presbyterian Church in Irvine and a celebration lunch for its former ministers worshiping at the Presbyterian Church in Geneva in the Orange County community of Laguna Woods. Allows for quick action.

The prosecutor is a gunner, David Chow, 68 years old. Las VegasWas motivated by his hatred for Taiwan. In Taiwan, he was born and raised after his family was expelled from mainland China when the Communists took control. He had nothing to do with the church, but officials said it gave him access to a larger group of Taiwanese he was targeting.

Authorities said Chow spent about an hour with attendees at a luncheon and seemed to have gained their trust in allowing him to carry out his plans. He chained the doors, shot the locks, and glued them together. He had two 9mm pistols and three bags containing four Morotov cocktail-type incendiary bombs and ammunition.

When the butterfly began to shoot, Chen charged him and was shot. He died on the scene, but his swift action confused the shooter. The shooter bumped into a chair thrown by former church minister Billy Chan and jumped at three members of the congregation who used an extension cord to bind him to the police. Arrived.

Only Chen was killed. Five others were injured, including four men aged 66-92 and a woman aged 86. Everything was free from the hospital or in a stable condition.

Sheriff Don Burns called Chen’s heroism a “meeting of good and evil.”

“Dr. Chen’s selfless love for others prevented hatred acts from claiming more lives beyond himself,” Burns said in a tweet.

Those who knew Chen said that selflessness defined his life.

John Nageraldini, Executive Director of the South Coast Medical Group, began by knocking on the door to greet him and introducing himself as a new family doctor in the area. Chen gave a health check to a student athlete and donated the money he paid to Arisonigel High School.

Geraldini took Kung Fu with his daughter at Chen’s suggestion.

“He always taught me how to protect ourselves,” she said.

His patient remembered him as a worried listener. “He was immeasurably kind,” read a note taped by the patient to his office door. There people left flowers to pay homage.

In a video posted online, Chen said he was encouraged to get involved in medicine by seeing the care his father provided as a doctor to a small community in East Texas where his family moved from Taiwan when he was a baby. I did.

“It was the values โ€‹โ€‹of this small town that took root in me when I was young, and it really helped create a sense for this community,” said Chen, who graduated from Texas Tech University School of Medicine and stayed in California. Said. “And in this modern society, in these modern times, we miss much of it.”

He called the patient-doctor relationship special. “You can find out a lot about patients, their families, and the communities in which they live, and the beauty is that I live in the same community.”

Chen’s minister and best friend Islay Angstan took a class with him to learn how to handle guns safely and protect his loved ones.

Angasten, a pastor of Kingdom Covenant Church in a community near Lake Forest, said: “He didn’t want to feel helpless. He wanted to make sure people were safe.”

On Sunday morning, Chen sent a text to Angasten informing him that he was not coming to service because he was taking his mother to church.

Since her husband died a few months ago, she stopped going and was still saddened by his death. However, Chan, a former minister of her church and her best friend, expressed her condolences to her and wrote that she was visiting from Taiwan. Her church invited her to her worship and lunch and met him.

Chen volunteered to drive her mother, but in a horrifying twist of fate, instead of going out to give her peace, she witnessed his death that day.

“My heart hurts,” the visiting minister wrote in a statement.

Shortly before the shooting, Angasten replied to Chen’s text, saying that the congregation would miss him and telling him to greet his mother.

“You are a very good boy,” Angustain sent a text message to Cheng.

“I can always get better,” Chen replied.

Within 15 minutes, Chen did not hesitate to prosecute the shooter.

“Evil didn’t take Dr. John out,” Angustain said. “Dr. John chose to abandon his life so that others could live.”


Watson reported from San Diego. Los Angeles Associated Press author Stephanie Dagio and New York news researcher Ronda Schaffner contributed to this report.

A doctor who fought a gunman, which is remembered as a microcosm of kindness

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