Inside the Texas church, she thought it was her turn to die. Then outside, a man appeared
As Farida Brown lay on the floor in the last row of pews in Sutherland Springs First Baptist Church, the 73-year-old woman felt certain she would be the next one killed.
And she almost was….
Up to that point, Farida Brown had sustained only shots to her legs. But as the shooter fired into the woman next to her, she prepared to be slain.
“Then she thought that it was her turn,” David Brown told The Post. “She just started praying.”
The gunman has since been identified as Devin Patrick Kelley.
At that moment, she heard a shot fired from a different man, at the front door.
The other man was Stephen Willeford, who lives near the church. Willeford, a certified shooting instructor, grabbed his own rifle and raced out of his house barefoot.
“I kept hearing the shots, one after another,” Willeford told 40/29 News, “very rapid shots, just ‘pop pop pop pop.’ and I knew every one of those shots represented someone, that it was aimed at someone, that they weren’t just random shots.
“He saw me, and I saw him,” Willeford told the station.
It was Willeford’s presence that distracted Kelley.
Willeford hit Kelley at least once, authorities said. Kelley then dropped his rifle, jumped in his Ford Expedition SUV and fled. Willeford, with the help of Johnnie Langendorff, who had stopped in his truck when he saw what was happening, gave chase at high speed, until Kelley’s car careened off the road into a ditch. Kelley was dead, with three gunshot wounds, including a self-inflicted shot to the head, authorities said Monday. Willeford apparently hit him in the leg and torso, according to Freeman Martin of the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Farida Brown survived.