Richard Fierro, an army veteran who, along with a trans woman, helped take down the Colorado Springs gunman, has opened up about the horrific ordeal, explaining, “I had to take him down.”

The duo disarmed the man responsible for five deaths and injuring twenty-five by dragging him to the ground before stopping on him with heels, selflessly saving many more lives.

“I don’t know exactly what I did. I just went into combat mode,” explained Richard Fierro in an interview with the New York Times.


“I just know I have to kill this guy before he kills us.”

45-year-old Fierro said he hit the floor when he heard gunshots while pulling his friend down with him.

Fierro, who explains he “went into combat mode”, then spotted the gunman moving toward a door leading to a patio where dozens of people had fled.

Courageously, Fierro took the opportunity to race across the room before grabbing the gunman by the handle on the back of his body armour, pulling him to the floor and jumping on top of him.

“I just knew I had to take him down.”

Fierro, who says the gunman weighed more than 300 lbs, explained that while he was on the floor wrestling with the gunman, he could see his rifle just out of reach; Fierro also says he saw the gunman had a pistol.

“I grabbed the gun out of his hand and just started hitting him in the head, over and over.”

Amid the scuffle, Fierro yelled for others to help him, with one man grabbing the rifle to safety while a trans woman stomped on the gunman with her high heels.

Fierro adds that he was concerned that he had killed the gunman by the time police had arrived, recalling being covered in blood and being detained for over an hour in a police car while pleading to be let out to check on his family.

Fierro was previously awarded the Bronze Star twice during his time in the army – a medal awarded to those in the United States Armed Forces for heroism in the field or to those who are meritorious in their work.

Daniel Aston, Derrick Rump, Kelly Loving, Ashley Paugh, and Raymond Green Vance have been named as the victims murdered by the gunman. Police have identified the gunman as 22-year-old Anderson Lee Aldrich.