Combat Vet Stopped San Diego Synagogue Shooter by Yelling ‘I’m Gonna Kill You!’

While everyone else ran away from the murderer, Stewart ran towards him. (Photo: KGTV)

A U.S. Army combat veteran is being credited with helping stop the man who killed one and injured others at a San Diego synagogue on Saturday.

His weapon of choice? Fear.

Oscar Stewart, 51, was in the Chabad of Poway synagogue when a man entered the lobby firing a semi-automatic rifle. But while the rest of the congregation ran to escape, Stewart ran in the opposite direction.

“Get down!” Stewart yelled, his wife and others who were at the scene told The Daily Caller. “You motherfucker! I’m going to kill you!”

“He was in the act of shooting when I saw him,” Stewart told the Caller. “When I yelled at him he turned and looked at me, and he like froze. And then the look on his face was one of amazement at first, and then one of fear. He saw me coming, and I was ready to do whatever I had to do to stop him.”

Stewart said that others later told him he sounded like four or five people yelling at once, and the Caller reports that a priest at a neighboring church could hear Stewart’s challenge.

SEE ALSO: Colorado Springs Gun Shop Owner Offers Free AR-15s to Rabbis

“I knew I had to be within five feet of this guy so his rifle couldn’t get to me,” Stewart said. “So I ran immediately toward him, and I yelled as loud as I could. And he was scared. I scared the hell out of him.”

Stewart said he chased the man all the way to his car and started pounding on the windows. As the man reached for his rifle, an off-duty Border Patrol agent ran up with a firearm and fired several rounds into the vehicle, intending to disable it.

Stewart credits the off-duty agent with saving his life and rejected the idea that more gun control can stop these kinds of mass murders.

“It takes a good guy with a gun to stop a bad guy with a gun,” he told the Caller.

When he returned to the synagogue, he found 60-year-old Lori Gilbert Kaye lying on the ground unresponsive. He helped with CPR in an attempt to save her life, but she died at the scene.

Kaye was reportedly shot while jumping between the rabbi and the shooter, saving the rabbi’s life. Stewart considers her the real hero.

SEE ALSO: Jews Speak Out on Guns and Pittsburgh

“I don’t know if I consciously made the choice to potentially sacrifice myself,” he added. “But I did. And this lady, she stood and she jumped in front of the shooter and she saved the rabbi’s life. When somebody said I was a hero, I’m like, she was a hero. I just did it instinctively, like an animal. There was no conscious decision. I just did it.”

Even though Stewart didn’t use a firearm to stop the shooter, his refusal to become a victim and his willingness to sacrifice himself for others aligns with the motivations of many who carry concealed firearms.

“People in the aftermath here have been saying it’s important to be strong and defend ourselves,” Stewart said. “I also think it’s important to know that being strong and defending ourselves requires a lot of sacrifice too.”

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About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over six years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Tyler. Got a hot tip? Send him an email at

{ 18 comments… add one }
  • Jonny5 May 5, 2019, 3:32 am

    Our Lord Jesus Christ was watching over our brother Oscar. Luckily Jesus was in the area that day. Jesus says “Yes to the Second Amendment”.

  • George Suggs May 4, 2019, 3:32 am

    May God richly bless you sir…you and Mrs. Kaye are the very definition of Hero.

  • Methadras May 3, 2019, 7:59 pm

    Remember this is California. This man is a hero by any definition, but he may have opened himself up to prosecutorial threat because he did yell “I’m going to kill you!!!” to someone in the commission of a crime. That implies he was not in imminent danger could be construed as a terroristic threat. I hope I’m wrong.

  • Mr. Sparkles May 3, 2019, 6:38 pm

    Thank you Oscar.

  • Mr. Sparkles May 3, 2019, 6:33 pm

    No big deal, I am sure Joe Biden or Senator Feinstein would have done that same,…. NOT!!

    They are to busy capitalizing on this incident to further their own personal agenda to disarm the good guys with guns so that they can continue the Chicago style gun control and crime reduction.

    Interesting that this never made the “free” press and the “main stream” media. Oh wait, they need permission from the democrats before they print or show a story. The press is free to print whatever the left wants them to and main stream can be replaced with “Democrat’ Panderers”.

  • John L May 3, 2019, 12:59 pm

    The one place I ALWAYS carry is at my church. God bless this man for refusing to be a victim.

  • Steven Lynch May 3, 2019, 8:52 am

    This man should not have to work again a day in his life , we should be ashamed America , this man should have a holiday made after him, thank you sir and God bless you

  • SIMON May 3, 2019, 7:49 am

    BLESS YOU BROTHER , a vet.

  • Eric May 3, 2019, 4:18 am

    I don’t know what my reaction would have been as a licensed conceal carry person I only hope that if I god forbid was in that type of a situation I would have the courage to act like Oscar did.

    Oscar you are a Mensch and a hero and you saved lives, God Bless you.

  • Rich May 1, 2019, 11:55 pm

    God bless Stewart. And God bless 60-year-old Lori Gilbert Kaye. Let us not forget Kaye as she was also a true hero laying down her life for another.

  • Zupglick May 1, 2019, 8:49 pm

    This guy deserves the Citizens Medal.

  • Dave May 1, 2019, 11:29 am

    Amongst his weaponry were such diverse elements as: fear, surprise, ruthless efficiency, not giving a flying fig about any gun-hating Pope…. ( for those who don’t get the reference)

    • Jonny5 May 5, 2019, 4:31 am

      Ironically, Catholics were quite brutal a few hundred years ago employing torture methods to expose non-believers, blasphemers and those they perceived to have committed a crime against the Catholic Church.
      This included, burning alive, buried alive, drowning, being pierced with blunt objects, being thrown from heights, imprisonment and utilisation of torture equipment such as the rack which stretched bodies and tore off limbs.
      Much the same as hardline Muslims now.
      They’re just catching up with the Christian faith.

  • kimberproSS May 1, 2019, 10:04 am

    I pray that if I was ever in this situation I would have the courage this gentleman displayed. God Bless him. I think of this every time I leave the house to be around other humans and then pick up my Sig Sauer and clip it on. Evil has been with us since the beginning of time and will be present at the end of time. Carrying a firearm for personal protection, or at lease a knife, may sound paranoid but better to be prepared than be a helpless victim. That is why it infuriates me to hear the psychobabble of the democrats who hate the 2A.

  • Kaniksu Kidd May 1, 2019, 8:15 am

    God bless this man!

  • Christopher Kennedy May 1, 2019, 6:01 am

    I’ll say is again and again, the best defense against a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.

    • I Love Liberty May 3, 2019, 11:22 am

      It’s too bad legally in California a good guy is debarred the use of firearms. The 2nd Amendment has been destroyed in California. This man had courage alone to deal with this murderer.

      Look at what you have done to your state citizens of California.

  • randy April 30, 2019, 1:26 pm

    IDK what he says, he was/is a hero and brave as hell.

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