James Shaw Jr. honored with Voice for Victims award for his work in mental health advocacy

shaw voice for victims award
Posted at 1:46 PM, Apr 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-25 14:46:57-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — James Shaw Jr., the man who disarmed Travis Reinking when he opened fire at an Antioch Waffle House, was honored with a Voice for Victims Award on Monday morning.

He was presented the award during a ceremony in Nashville as part of National Crime Victims' Rights Week. Stephanie Rutherford, a Board of Parole employee whose daughter was the victim of a drunk driver, was also honored with the award.

During the ceremony, Shaw spoke about his experience with trauma in the days, months and years after the shooting. He has become an advocate for mental health awareness and the impact of post traumatic stress disorder.

Watch his whole speech in the video player below:

James Shaw Jr. honored with Voice for Victims award

He ended his speech with a message of perseverance for anyone who has ever been a victim.

"Don't let your story champion you — champion your story. Don't fall victim to your story. Move past it; do as best as you can. Let those that you've lost, if you've lost anybody or whatever your situation was, let their name live on through you," he said. "If you fall down nine times, get up 12. Keep working. Let's get it done."