Brave Man Who Stood Up to Hate in Kansas Needs Your Help
News| | By Steven Lerner
Hero is a title that gets thrown around a lot nowadays, but a Kansas man who courageously stood up to a violent act of Islamophobia deserves to be credited as one. 24-year-old Ian Grillot — the man who attempted to stop a hateful gunman — is in stable condition and recovering at the University of Kansas hospital. On Wednesday night inside of Austin’s Bar & Grill, police say 51-year-old Adam Purinton shouted, “get out of my country” before shooting two Indian immigrants he perceived as Middle Eastern. Purinton is now in police custody. Srinivas Kuchibhotla, one of the shooting victims, was later pronounced dead. Alok Madasani, another victim, survived the attack. Grillot, a patron of the bar, reportedly counted the shots that were fired while hiding under the table. He then jumped out, chased Purinton and attempted to subdue him before the police arrived. “I got behind him and he turned around and fired at me,” Grillot said in a YouTube video released by the hospital. “I wasn’t really thinking when I did that. It was just, it wasn’t right, and I didn’t want the gentleman to potentially go after somebody else.” Grillot said that he might have “miscounted” the shots, because a bullet went through his right hand and chest. He fractured a vertebrae and his neck. On Thursday, Grillot said that Madasani visited him in the hospital and thanked him for his bravery. It was at that moment when Grillot learned that Madasani’s wife was five months pregnant. “Something was guiding me to do what I did, and someone was watching over me and him,” Grillot said in the video. He added that Madasani are now “best friends.” Grillot’s sisters started a GoFundMe campaign to raise $200,000 for their brother’s medical expenses. As of February 24, they raised over $150,000. One of Grillot’s sisters, Maggie, thanked everyone for their kindness in a Facebook post on Thursday.
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