ABILENE–Hardin-Simmons University student Jacob Allen is in critical condition at Hendrick Medical Center after he was shot in the head and the leg Sept. 7 while working at the Mesquite Square Apartments in Abilene.
Allen, a senior business major from Brownwood, and another HSU student, Josh Steed, a junior business major from San Angelo, were on duty at the front desk just after 5 p.m. Wednesday when, according to police, a 70-year-old man, a resident of the apartment complex, began firing shots at the two students.
Jacob was shot once in the head and once in the leg. Steed struck the assailant with a chair, then retrieved the gun, hid it behind the office and called 9-11 for police and medical help.
As word of the incident spread, HSU students, faculty and staff gathered at the hospital in support of the two victims.
Kelly Pigott, HSU chaplain and associate professor of church history, said, "Jacob is well loved. Many students and friends were at the hospital last night to support him and Josh and their families. We are praying for them."
"We should remember to pray for the man who wielded the gun, also," he said. "There is something going on there that needs healing. We are just hoping that overall healing takes place."
During a 9/11 memorial service Thursday in Logsdon Chapel, HSU Provost Tommy Brisco asked those gathered to remember the victims of 9/11 and to also lift up Allen and his family in prayer.
Police are calling Steed a hero for his actions in subduing the gunman.