SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. -- A survivor from Wednesday's San Bernardino mass shooting revealed in a written statement Friday that one of the 14 killed was a hero that saved her life.
Denise Peraza, a 27-year-old that was inside the Inland Regional Center building where 14 people were killed, wrote to our sister station KABC stating that her coworker, 45-year-old Shannon Johnson, shielded her from bullets, sacrificing his own life so she can live.
In the form of an email, Peraza wrote in part: "Wednesday morning at 10:55 a.m., we were seated next to each other at a table, joking... would have never guessed that only five minutes later, we would be huddled next to each other under that same table, using a fallen chair as a shield from over 60 rounds of bullets being fired across the room."
Peraza was shot in the lower back.
Her statement came after she received the heartbreaking news that Johnson did not survive the mass shooting, prompting her to reveal the selfless act he committed for her.
"I will always remember his left arm wrapped around me, holding me as close as possible next to him behind that chair, and amidst all the chaos, I'll always remember him saying these three words, 'I got you.' I believe i am still here today because of this amazing man."
Johnson was an inspector at the public health department who lived in Koreatown and left home at 4:45 a.m. to take the train to the job he loved in San Bernardino.
"This amazing, selfless man who always brought a smile to everyone's face in the office ... this is Shannon Johnson, who will be deeply missed by all ... my friend, my hero."