“I forgive him, and that’s the hardest thing to say.” These are the words of 32-year-old Tiffany Wallace, the daughter of one of the victims who died in the shooting at West Freeway Church of Christ in Texas over the weekend.
As Christian Headlines previously reported, more than 240 parishioners were gathered inside the church located near Fort Worth, Texas, when a gunman began firing upon them. The gunman shot two members of the church before members of the church’s security team drew their own weapons killing the shooter. One of the two victims was 64-year-old Anton “Tony” Wallace, NBC DFW reports. Tony was a father, grandfather, husband, church deacon and registered nurse.
According to his daughter, Tony had just finished giving out the eucharist when an unfamiliar man stood up and took aim at the church’s security guard. In the chaos, her father was shot.
Wallace recalled running to her father upon realizing that he had been hit.
“I ran toward my dad and the last thing I remember is him asking for oxygen, and I was just holding him, telling him I loved him and that he was going to make it,” Wallace told the NBC News affiliate.
The grieving daughter then reflected on what a wonderful person her dad was.
“He was very loved – a very loved man – very humble. He would literally give you the shirt off of his back,” She said. “He was amazing He was a godly person, and even when we talked about going to heaven he always said, 'I’m always prepared,' But you never thought this would happen.”
She continued, “You just wonder why. How can someone so evil – the devil – step into the church and do this?”
Still, despite losing her father, Wallace said she forgives the shooter.
“I forgive him [the gunman], and that’s the hardest thing to say,” she said.
Wallace also offered thanks to the armed parishioner who stopped the shooter.
“He is a hero to me, and I appreciate him” she said. “I’m just glad everybody’s okay. I know my dad is up there with his sister, his parents, in a wonderful place. Not in pain anymore … He’s just in peace now. I know he’s in good hands.”
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Kayla Koslosky has been the Editor of ChristianHeadlines.com since 2018. She has B.A. degrees in English and History and previously wrote for and was the managing editor of the Yellow Jacket newspaper. She has written on her blog kaylamariekoslosky.blogspot.com since 2012 and has also contributed to IBelieve.com and Crosswalk.com.