PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA) – To call Jerry Maroni a hero is an understatement.
When David Mazzocco began shooting patrons at the Fort Pitt Inn in North Fayette, Jerry – a 60-year-old retired steel worker – instinctively jumped from his video poker machine and charged Mazzocco.
Jerry was grazed in the cheek and shot in the arm, but he managed to tackle Mazzocco, stopping the shooter from killing anyone else.
“I started running towards him and he shot and he missed. He missed me once, and the second shot he nicked [my neck] and then by that time, I got his arm and as I was trying to get the gun he shot me here in the arm. Got him down and took the gun off him and started beating him in the head with that gun,” Maroni said.
Mazzocco was armed with three guns when he was arrested, and shot two other patrons before being stopped, killing 29-year-old James Adams of Imperial.
“One way or another, I got to do something, or he’s going to kill us all,” says Maroni.
KDKA’s John Shumway Reports:
KDKA-AM’s Larry Richert and John Shumway talked to Maroni from his hospital room at Allegheny General Hospital, and tells his tale. Despite being called a hero, Maroni doesn’t think he’s done anything special.
“It was just a reaction, I guess,” he said.
Watch Kym Gable’s report:
Family and loved ones also gathered in the parking lot of the Fort Pitt Inn to honor James Adams, who was the one fatality in Monday’s bar shooting.
Emotions were raw at tonight’s Candlelight vigil, as friends and relatives memorialized the 29-year-old who often worked as a D.J. at the pub.
Listen to the interview here:
If you would like to help Jerry, who was recently laid off from his job as a steel worker and has no medical coverage, you can donate to the “Hero Funds for Diego.” Donations will be accepted at any First Niagara Branch or mailed to First Niagara Imperial Branch at 100 West Allegheny Road, Imperial, Pa. 15126.