FOX 32 NEWS - Three movers are being hailed as heroes after hiding a woman in their truck from a man with a gun who was chasing her.
The chaotic scene unfolded at the Skyline Smiles dental office in the 1000 block of West Madison Avenue just before 11 AM Thursday.
“We were just sitting there talking and all of a sudden she had came up to the side of the truck and she was really like frantic hysterical, freaking out like I need a phone, I need a phone right now to make a phone call, someone's shooting, they're shooting at my office,” said Mike Zaininger, with Wisdom Moving.
Zaininger and two co-workers hustled the woman up a loading ramp into the back of the moving truck and hid with her.
“Specifically, we had like a big box here, right here we had another box, right here all four of us were standing right here talking while she was hysterical you know,” said Cody Grant as he stood inside the back of the truck describing where they hid.
Grant shot dramatic cell phone video of the woman as she ran around the front of the building and down the alley moments after a single shotgun blast rang out. The suspect was a 40-year-old Plainfield man took his own life in the alley behind the office.
The incident actually began in Plainfield earlier in the morning when the suspect broke into a home in the 23000 block of West Ottawa Street and stole a shotgun from a locked case, according to the homeowner.
After the gunman drove to the West Loop, he went into the dentist office with a backpack and the shotgun, waved it around and ordered people to the floor. The woman he was after fled out the back and was fortunate the moving truck was facing the way it was, away from the door.
“So if we were facing the other way, the guy would've saw all of us, so it was very, very lucky that our truck was facing the certain way because the truck was basically a lot of protection today,” said Josh Lara with Wisdom Moving. “The only thing that we were worried about was where the shooter was located because we knew he was close but no one wants to poke their head out to find out.”
The men ran inside a nearby building with the woman where they were moving a client out. They hid there for safety, later returning to the alley after hearing the shotgun blast.
“As the story was being unfolded, the cop was like you guys saved her life, That witness that you guys brought us, We're like yeah, he's like that was the girl he was looking for to kill, he's like since he didn't find her he blew his brains out,”Grant said.
“A little ironic we are moving from the West Loop to Elmhurst and the day we move this happens,” said Adam MCombs, noting he had changed the time of the move.
“The move was scheduled at 11:30 and I just moved it up to 10:00, and if the moving truck wouldn't have been there and these guys, I think the circumstances would've been different,” McComb added from outside his home in Elmhurst.
The three movers didn’t expect to end up being heroes.
“No we did not, but deep down inside we're all heroes it just takes the situation to truly bring it out in us,” Lara said.
The men were publicly thanked on the Skyline Smiles Facebook page.
“I want to recognize the three men whose heroics saved a life,” wrote Deepak Neduvelil DDS.