An Alabama father stopped an attack on a McDonald's by shooting the attacker on Saturday night.
While the armed father was in the Birmingham fast-food restaurant with his two sons, a masked man entered and began shooting. The father then returned fire on the attacker, ultimately striking and killing him. The father and one of his sons were injured in the attack. No other injuries were reported.
"It's really sad an otherwise positive day had an ending like this,'" Birmingham Police spokesman Sgt. Bryan Shelton told AL.com. "Earlier we had such a spirit of celebration in the city because of the events going on and now families are having to deal with the tragedy of loved ones who are hurt or killed."
Sgt. Shelton said the father acted in defense of himself and his sons.
"Right now, it appears the victim made a decision that cost his life and the father made a decision that preserved his and [his] children's'[sic] life," he told the publication.
An unnamed witness, who was ordering from the drive-thru when the attack happened, told AL.com she heard the gunshots and saw children running from the store. Markus Washington, one of the McDonald's employees who was in the store during the attack, told WBRC that he ran and hid in the freezer as shots rang out.
"I was making two quarter-pounders and heard three shots ring, and then exchange of gunfire two more" he told the news station. "All we hear is like different gunfire, so in my mind, I'm imagining everybody is dead. He's looking for us."
When Washington realized that the armed father had stopped the attacker, he said he was grateful the man had saved his life.
"I'm feeling grateful," he said. "He's my hero because I can only imagine how it would've went if he wasn't armed. We might not be here having this interview."
The armed father's name was not released to the public but police said he is not facing charges.