Father’s parting words to son killed in California shooting: ‘I love you’

Cheryl Sanders
November 9, 2018

Ventura County sheriff's Sgt. Ron Helus died of gunshot wounds he suffered trying to stop gunman Ian David Long, who authorities say opened fire in a packed country music bar, killing 12 before police believe he turned the gun on himself Wednesday night.

Dean said that the dead police officer, who was named as Ron Helus and had been on the force for 29 years, was among the first on the scene.

This violence came just days after 11 people were gunned down in a Pittsburgh synagogue, months after 17 students and staff were massacred in a high school at Parkland, Florida, and a year after 84 people were killed in rampages in Las Vegas and Sutherland Springs, Texas.

Jason Coffman tearfully speaks with reporters in Thousand Oaks after learning of the death of his son, Cody, on November 7, 2018.

Deputies found Long "was somewhat irate, acting a little irrationally" and called in a mental health specialist, Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean said.

Helus was on the phone with his wife Karen when he got the call that there was a shooting.

Helus, who lived in neighboring Moorpark with his wife and son, died at about 2 a.m.at a hospital. He told her, "I've got to go handle a call".

He said he has no doubt Helus' tactics at the scene "were sound when he went in".

Trump praised police for their "great bravery" in the California attack and said, "God bless all of the victims and families of the victims". "He gave his all".

"He went in there to save lives".

Nicholas Champion was among those who survived both shootings and spoke about his experience to CBS News. Coffman told reporters later Thursday that his son just wanted to be a good big brother to his siblings.

Speaking through tears, Mr Coffman said: "I talked to him last night, before he headed out the door. I am speechless and heartbroken".

"He was my fishing buddy".

"Firefighting has been something I've been interested and wanted to do for a long time".

"It's going to be a very somber day", Steinwender said.

Borderline Bar & Grill is located just miles away from California Lutheran University and Pepperdine University, and is reportedly a hotspot for students to hang out.

The niece of actress Tamera Mowry-Housley and former Fox News correspondent Adam Housley was killed in the shooting.

"Our hearts are broken", the couple said. He told her he loved her and hung up to respond. "We thank everyone for your prayers and ask for privacy at this time".

When the gunman ran out of bullets and had to reload, Wennerstrom said he knew he had a moment to act. Meek, who had recently graduated from the university, helped to save lives during the shooting, according to the university.

The university said in a statement that the family of recent graduate Justin Meek said he was among the dead.

Other reports by iNewsToday