Parkrose High School football coach Keanon Lowe is being hailed a hero around the world after footage shows him disarming 18-year-old Angel Granados-Diaz, who walked into a classroom with a loaded shotgun, has gone viral. The ordeal took place on May 17 in Portland, Oregon.
The surveillance footage, acquired by KOIN 6 News, shows Granados-Diaz walking into a hallway on campus concealing a loaded shotgun. Granados-Diaz can then be seen entering a room where Lowe first encountered the student. Security footage from another camera shows the moment coach Lowe disarms Granados-Diaz, before hugging him in a long embrace.
Lowe said he had been called to the fine arts building to get a student before the incident took place. “I walk in there, I get to the classroom, I’m in the classroom for 15, 20 seconds—you know, I ask the teacher, ‘Is the student here?'” He continued, “The door opens, I’m within arm’s length of the door, about 3 feet away from the door, and there’s a kid with a gun, a shotgun.”
“In a fraction of a second, I analyzed everything really fast. I saw the look in his face, look in his eyes, looked at the gun, realized it was a real gun and then my instincts just took over,” Lowe told KOIN 6 News. He said running away never crossed his mind. “I lunged for the gun, put two hands on the gun. He had his two hands on the gun and obviously the kids are running out of the classroom and screaming.”
The football coach told the news outlet that he didnt want to be called a hero, but said his presence may have come down to fate. “I think the universe works in amazing ways,” he said. “I think I’ve gone through stuff in my life that prepared me for that moment and I’m lucky and I’m happy that I was in that classroom for those kids and I was able to prevent that tragedy. I don’t know if ‘hero’ is the right word but the universe works in mysterious ways and I was meant to be in that classroom and I was meant to stop a tragedy.”
“I felt compassion for the kid, to be honest,” Lowe said. “I had a real-life conversation. Obviously, he broke down and I just wanted to let him know that I was there for him. I told him I was there to save him. I was there for a reason and that this is a life worth living.”
Granados-Diaz, now 19, pleaded guilty to gun charges last month and was given a 36-month probation sentence during which must receive mental health and substance abuse treatment. According to Newsweek, officials said Granados-Diaz had previously made suicidal statements and that during the incident, he never pointed the gun at anyone but himself.
Coach Keanon Lowe IS a hero and schools need more Kong’s like him to protect and care for our kids! Blessings to Coach Lowe!??