Man Who Stopped Mass Shooting Starts Teaching Self-Defense

( – July 3rd will mark the one-year anniversary of the day when an Arizona concealed-carry holder stopped a mass shooting on his own despite being shot in the head, losing an eye, having a fractured jaw, and dealing with a ripped eardrum.

Raul Mendez had been attending a neighborhood Fourth of July celebration in 2022 with his pregnant wife and two daughters when he was shot without warning.

Mendez said the shooter arrived after the party started and began mingling with the approximately 30 adults and children that were there. Although Mendez says the man was not a close friend to anyone in attendance, no one suspected him because he was the host’s neighbor.

The culprit, 46-year-old Jason Hunt, was in the kitchen getting food with others when he took his gun out and began firing on the partiers. A round struck Mendez in the head and he fell to the ground.

Thinking him dead, his wife rushed their daughters into the back of the house and barricaded them in a room with other children. Two women stayed behind and attempted to fight with the suspect. Knowing Mendez carried a handgun, the women called his name despite not knowing if he was alive.

“I heard my name. And I was able to get up,” said Mendez.

While covered in blood and unable to see out of his left eye, Mendez shot Hunt four times in his chest, killing him. Before he was stopped, Hunt took the lives of two of Mendez’s friends and injured several others. Police could not determine a motive.

Once healed, Mendez turned the tragedy he experienced into motivation. His story attracted the attention of the National Rifle Association. In addition to becoming a certified NRA firearms instructor, he filmed a promotional video for the organization.

A law-abiding gun owner can save lives, he says. “I’m living proof.”

Mendez laments the fact that his story received very little attention in the media.

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