The Las Vegas shootings carried out by Amanda and Jerad Miller was horrific in and of itself when they killed two police officers, but it was also awful when Joseph Robert Wilcox was gunned, down trying to come to the rescue of those in the Wal-Mart that the couple had entered.
The couple walked to a nearby Wal-Mart, where Jerad Miller told shoppers to run because the police were coming, and fired a shot in the air. "The revolution is about to start," one shopper heard him shout. Amanda Miller placed the backpacks the couple had been carrying into a shopping cart, police said. Then one shopper attempted an ill-fated act of bravery.
Joseph Robert Wilcox, 31, of Las Vegas pulled out a concealed weapon and confronted Jerad Miller, apparently unaware that Miller had a companion. Amanda Miller fired into Wilcox's ribs and he collapsed, fatally wounded, police said.
Here's a lovely piece on Mr. Wilcox in the Las Vegas Review-Journal:
Joseph Robert Wilcox wasn’t one for the limelight.
And yet the 31-year-old Las Vegan is being heralded as a hero for giving his life while trying to stop Jerad and Amanda Miller in the midst of their shooting spree in the east valley late Sunday morning.
After executing two Las Vegas police officers at CiCi’s Pizza, Jerad Miller entered a nearby Wal-Mart, at Nellis Boulevard and Stewart Avenue, fired a round in the air and ordered everyone to leave, setting off a panic. It was at that point, instead of running, Wilcox approached Jerad Miller from behind.
Law enforcement sources said Wilcox, who had a concealed weapons permit and carried a handgun, was ready to “end it” when Amanda Miller, who was behind Wilcox, shot and killed him.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to his family and friends. An incident like this is so tragic. Joseph wasn't a gun-toting NRA member, but a concerned man who wanted to do something.
Debra Wilcox said her son in recent months had stopped carrying his handgun with him. “Only 10 out of 100 times he would take it with him. I don’t know why he took it with him yesterday,” she said.
His plan, when he returned from Wal-Mart, was to take his younger cousin swimming at a family member’s home. But he never came back.
“He was very protective of other people. The reason he got that gun was because he got tired of people like that,” people who would pick on others, Debra Wilcox said.
He was a web designer who also thought about becoming a police officer.
Joseph Wilcox had a positive outlook on life. He was always trying to help others, she said.
Wilcox was between jobs at the time of the shooting, but he was always applying for work. He was trying to find employment as a web designer, Wilson said.
Wilcox had considered joining the Metropolitan Police Department several times, his mother said.
“I told him I didn’t want him to be a cop, because he could go out and get shot,” she said, shaking her head.
Could it have ended differently for this courageous man if after the Sandy Hook tragedy, the NRA worked with the Democratic party, cooled down the rhetoric and implemented some new gun regulations or at least worked together? Instead, we got an outpouring of crazed NRA ads and calls for the entire country including children at schools to be armed.
How did that work out for Joseph Robert Wilcox? Carrying a weapon doesn't mean that you're safe, but it does increase the odds that you might be killed.
if you can, please make a donation to the WILCOX MEMORIAL FUND
A memorial fund has been set up for Joseph Wilcox at Wells Fargo. Those who wish to contribute to the Joseph R. Wilcox Memorial Fund can do so using account number 8485852688.
Morning show hosts Mark and Mercedes with MIX 94.1-FM also will be teaming up with the Trauma Intervention Program of Southern Nevada, Inc. on Tuesday morning to raise funds for the Wilcox family.
Donations to the Wilcox family also can be made from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Tuesday morning at Dunkin’ Donuts, 10100 S. Eastern Ave., Henderson; or at Dunkin’ Donuts, 6935 N. Durango Drive.
I wonder if Wayne LaPierre or Ted Nugent will kick in to help cover his funeral? Don't hold your breath.