Las Vegas Shooting Victim: “I Will Stand for My President”

Las Vegas shooting victim, Thomas Gunderson
Photo credit | Thomas Gunderson via Todd Starnes

While lawmakers and athletes alike are taking a knee, a Las Vegas shooting victim is taking a stand. Recovering in a local hospital from being shot in the leg, Thomas Gunderson is showing what respect looks like. Upon hearing the news that President Trump and First Lady Melania were visiting, he was determined to rise to the occasion.

Attending the Route 91 Harvest Country Music Festival, Gunderson was one of the thousands who found themselves in the under a shower of bullets.  As the shots began, he rushed to help people evacuate to safety. Moments later, a bullet tore through his leg instantly dropping him to the ground.

Speaking to Fox News Radio Host Todd Starnes via telephone, Gunderson recounts the moment of his injury. “I went straight to the ground. It didn’t hurt. My body numbed up,” he tells Starnes. “I was covered in a pool of blood. It was shooting out. It was literally everywhere.” Gunderson recalls being scared that he would “bleed to death” right there.

However, thanks to a couple of strangers and a well-placed belt, Gunderson made it to the hospital. Fortunately, the bullet went straight through his leg, only tearing his calf muscle. But, Gunderson is suffering from the nerve pain, which makes standing excruciatingly difficult. That is also what makes his story more amazing.

Standing Tall

I will never lie down when the President of this great country comes to shake my hand! There may be plenty of issues in this country but I will always respect my country, my president and my flag. Shot in the leg or not, I will stand to show my President the respect he deserves!

Posted by Thomas Gunderson on Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Visiting with victims of the tragedy, President Trump, and First Lady Melania made a stop in Gunderson’s room. Melania enters the room first, and he stood up to greet her and shake her hand. She clearly tells him not to stand, but he was having none of it. When the president enters, Gunderson rose again.

For Gunderson, it is a matter of respect.

“I told my family that I was going to stand up and shake my president’s hand – out of respect for him and our leaders and our nation,” he says. “That was one of the most humbling experiences of my life. The fact that the president would take time to come here and just shake my hand and to let him know if I needed anything.”

Incidentally, video of the heartwarming and deeply patriotic moment is garnering a lot of attention on social media. It has over 17 million views and counting, and rightfully so. Mr. Gunderson is a shining example of what true patriotism and courage in the face of adversity look like.

We wish Mr. Gunderson and all the wounded in Las Vegas, a speedy recovery.