From Tragedy to Triumph: Arizona Dad Becomes NRA Certified Instructor After Surviving Mass Shooting

Mr. Mendez with Wayne LaPierre. (Photo: NRA)

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

An Arizona dad saved 30 people last year on July 3rd after being shot in the head. Now he’s using his experience as a way to help others.

A year ago this week, several families were gathered together in Surprise Arizona, celebrating our country the way we all love to. Reports say that a fight had broken out, and then witnesses told Fox10 they thought they’d heard fireworks.

“I heard what I thought were fireworks going off in someone’s backyard off the street, and then I started hearing voices,” one woman said. “I didn’t know what was going on. There was crying and kind of wailing.”

Mass Shooting, Mass Terror

Jason Hunt, a neighbor who has been identified as the only suspect, had apparently started shooting. Two men were killed and four others were injured. One of those injured was Raul Mendez, the host of the party. 

He later told FoxNews that he had been shot in the head in front of his pregnant wife. She saw the blood, and thinking him dead, took her two daughters to hide in the house. She “barricaded the door with the dresser” and told the kids to hide under clothes and make no sounds. There were three children in there besides Mendez’s girls.

Mendez pulled himself up when two women, who were fighting against the still-shooting Hunt, called for him. These two women knew something Hunt didn’t. Mendez had a concealed carry license and was packing. 

Mendez is quoted as saying, “By the glory of God or the adrenaline and just everything, just the will to live and the will to protect my family, I was able to hear those pleas, those yells for help. I heard my name. And I was able to get up.” 

He shot at Hunt four times and successfully stopped the mass shooting before it became any worse. Detectives who later investigated the case declared that the shots fired by Mendez were unquestionably in self-defense.

Mendez was taken to a hospital, where he was kept for a week. Fox News says “He lost his left eye, fractured his jaw, suffered a torn eardrum, and lost his sense of smell.”

Raul Mendez, NRA Certified

But this isn’t the end of the story for Mendez. He has taken this traumatic experience as a learning opportunity and got himself certified as an NRA Instructor.

He told Fox News Digital, “The reason why I became an instructor was just to have the knowledge to train my family, train my friends, and especially, you know, since I am that living proof that firearms or a gun in the hands of law-abiding citizens save lives,”

READ MORE ABOUT RAUL MENDEZ: Hero Stopped Mass Shooting, But Mainstream Media Never Covered The Story

In his interview with Fox, Mendez also mentioned that he wished people knew his story.

He says “You don’t really hear about, ‘Hey, there was a shooting, but a guy with a CCW or a father or a husband was able to protect his family or took out his own firearm,'” 


NRA has been working with Mendez to increase awareness

It is fantastic that this dad is so passionate about the Second Amendment and had prepared himself. He did a noble thing by defending his neighbors last year and is doing another noble thing now.

Let us all take note of him and take action to be prepared like Raul Mendez.

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  • KarlY July 10, 2023, 10:40 am

    In spite of being shot in the head, Mendez saved a lot of lives with his own pistol by stopping the shooter. It’s not surprising at all that the story never made the news. The liberal news only prints stories of mass killers using guns. A good man with a good gun just doesn’t fit the liberal news’s agenda.

  • ejharbet July 10, 2023, 7:33 am

    this is in contrast to a Texas family who had no defenders and was decimated by a goblin po-ed because they asked him to stop target practice so a baby could sleep. Im rooting for that pos to have a hour of begging for death on a gurney in Huntsville.

  • bobsyouruncle July 9, 2023, 1:41 pm

    WOW! I saw this guy awhile back on Tucker Carlson.

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