After a father shielded his three children from gunfire on Sept. 21, netizens raised over $280,000 for his medical expenses, therapy, and income, TMZ reports.
Anthony Jefferson, 39, was purchasing a car for his wife when three men opened fire at On the Road Auto Group in New York, NBC New York reports.
“I was trying to surprise my wife for her birthday,” Jefferson said, per NBC New York.
In a video of the shooting, Jefferson and his children are seen sitting on a couch moments before shots fire through a glass window near them. Employees bolt away, and Jefferson pulls children on the ground and shields them with his body.
Jefferson was shot three times, once in the thigh and twice in his boot. His children sustained no injuries.
Serena Wingate, a close friend of Jefferson’s, started a GoFundMe for Jefferson after he lost his painting and construction jobs.
“Due to his injury, Anthony lost his job and has to have surgery to remove the bullet,” Wingate wrote. “This Go Fund me is to help this heroic dad with his medical bills and his kids with therapy. They are beyond traumatized.”
Danica Jefferson, Jefferson’s wife, told TMZ that Jefferson is “currently unable to walk.”
Jefferson said he “was just being a father,” per NBC New York.
“I truly want to thank everyone for their well wishes and get well soon and praise for my family. I appreciate that from the bottom of my heart,” Jefferson said. “If my arms would have stretched to everyone, I would have made sure I would have gotten them to safety.”
Wingate did not immediately respond to the Daily Dot’s request for comment.
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