Aurora Victim Jonathan Blunk Remembered as Hero Who May Have Tried to Stop Shooter

Photo courtesy of The Blunk family



Jonathan Blunk, who died when an armed shooter opened fire in an Aurora, Colorado movie theater was memorialized in a service today wherein many of his friends and family members spoke of him as a great guy and a hero to the core.

The Washington Post quotes one of his friends, James Gill, who said, ““He made it a point to befriend everyone, and the guy didn’t know what negativity was. Throw into that a little testosterone … and you have one beautiful man.’”

The Post article also noted that people close to Blunk may have been told by federal authorities that Blunk may have tried to stop the shooter by perhaps trying to get to his weapons.

“Law enforcement is leaning toward he was trying to get the (suspect’s) gun to save people’s lives,” said Roland Lackey, an Air Force veteran who officiated the service. “He was a hero, and I salute him.”

FBI spokesman Dave Joly in Denver said Friday that a court gag-order prevented him from commenting on the case.

It’s also been indicated that Blunk’s wife was told that he matched the description of someone who tried to stop the shooter, and that his body was found in a position in the theater that corroborated that theory.

There is no way for those of us outside of the investigation to know, at this point, whether Blunk did try to stop the shooter, but there is no doubt in many Americans’ minds that Blunk—who served three tours in the Middle East as a member of the U.S. Navy—was a hero regardless.

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  1. I didn’t continue the discussion on the “When you guilt men….”, but I certainly believe that applauding someone for going above and beyond can be done without guilting those who didn’t do so. If everyone was a hero the word is useless. A hero is someone who does something beyond what is expected from them, beyond what is the norm.

    Now saying/implying that so-and-so should’ve tried to perform an heroic act (as in above and beyond) when they did not is guilting in my view and it really serves no god purpose. As an example I think that sense criticism of the police who seemed more concerned with directing traffic on the mainland at Utøya is fair game (they had standing instructions to immediately intervene even in sharp situations if lives were at risk, but were ordered to secure the area and wait) while criticism of young people who ran away from the perpetrator over dead and wounded bodies while ignoring cries for help is not.
    Telling stories of those who did help others, wounded or not, to hide or to swim towards the mainland and calling those heroic acts I have no problem with.

  2. Richard Aubrey says:

    It’s not me making a dichotomy. See the editors’ post “When you guilt men….”
    Seems as if there’s a problem with making a big deal of a guy who tried, dying in the attempt, to save others. If you do, by extension or implication, there’s something or other less than thatwhich you say about those who didn’t.
    Sort of an “oops”, one that should have been anticipated, imo.

  3. Can you call Blunk a hero without guilting those who didn’t do such things?

    Of course you can. Sounds as if you’re invoking some kind of false dichotomy in which people can be only a hero or a coward. You can be plenty of things in between.

  4. Richard Aubrey says:

    Some guys run toward the sound of the guns. In the marrow, I guess.
    Can you call Blunk a hero without guilting those who didn’t do such things?

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