Aaron Salter Jr.’s family also launched a GoFundMe page to help “with this unforeseen tragedy.” It has raised over three times its goal.
Shark Tank star Daymond John has offered to pay for the funeral costs of Aaron Salter Jr., the security guard who was shot and killed during the weekend massacre at Tops Friendly Market, according to TMZ.
Salter Jr. — who was called a “true hero” by Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia after he unsuccessfully tried to stop the gunman — is one of 10 people slain in the Buffalo, New York, rampage meant to terrorize its Black community.
Last Saturday, 18-year-old Payton Gendron allegedly took an AR-15-style rifle with phrases like “Here’s your reparations!” written on it and opened fire at the supermarket, which is located in a predominantly Black area of Buffalo.
As theGrio previously reported, Salter Jr. fired multiple times at the attacker, striking his armor-plated vest at least once, but the bullet didn’t pierce it. The retired Buffalo police officer was then shot and killed.
John, who reportedly saw photos of Salter Jr. posted with a cardboard cutout of him, then contacted the slain 55-year-old man’s family to let them know he wanted to pay his funeral expenses, per TMZ.
Salter Jr.’s son, Aaron Salter III, told the outlet that the whole family watched Shark Tank, and that his father was an inventor like the FUBU founder.
John sounded emotional when he was speaking, telling the family not to hesitate to reach out in the future for further assistance, Salter III shared.
The Salters also launched a GoFundMe effort to “help the family with this unforeseen tragedy.” As of early Thursday, it had raised over $36,000 — its goal was $10,000.
“Thanks everyone for this amazing show of support at this time. My dad was such a kind hearted overall good guy and I know he’s looking down smiling right now,” Salter III wrote on the GoFundMe page Monday. “He loved Buffalo and he loved being a police officer but now he can see how many people had love for him.”
Salter Jr. “cared about the community, theGrio previously reported. “He looked after the store,” local resident Yvette Mack told Associated Press. She said he was someone who “let us know if we was right or wrong.”
Before the shooting, Mack spoke to Salter Jr. about her lottery game, per AP.
“I was playing my numbers. He said ‘I see you’re playing your numbers!’ I laughed. And he was playing his numbers too,” she said. “Can you imagine seeing someone and you don’t know he’s not going to go home?”
As reported by USA Today, President Joe Biden also honored Salter Jr. during an event in Buffalo this week honoring its law enforcement officers and firefighters.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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