‘Extraordinarily brave’ 22-year-old releases statement after church shooting

Robert Caleb Engle (Courtesy: Facebook)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The 22-year-old Metro police hailed as “extraordinarily brave” for his actions in the Antioch church shooting released a statement from the hospital Sunday night.

Robert “Caleb” Engle reportedly confronted the gunman inside Burnette Chapel Church of Christ after the pistol-bearing man opened fire on the congregation.

Police said Engle suffered a “significant injury to the head” when the gunman pistol-whipped him, and amid the confrontation, the gunman accidentally shot himself. Engle then ran out to his car to get his own gun and held it on the suspect until police arrived.

PHOTOS: Mass shooting at Antioch church

While authorities called him brave, many are also calling him a hero, something Engle says he doesn’t want to be called.

When complimented about his heroism at the hospital, he stated, “I do not want to be labeled a hero. The real heroes are the police, first responders and medical staff and doctors who have helped me and everyone affected.”

Below is his full statement:

I’ve been going to this church my whole life, since I was a small child. I would have never, ever thought something like this would have happened.

I ask everyone to pray for the victims, family members of the victims, our church community. Please pray for healing. Also, please pray for the shooter, the shooter’s family and friends. They are hurting as well.

I pray that through all of this that people will come to know Christ and I ask our nation to reflect on Romans 8:31: “If God is for us, who can be against us?”

— Caleb Engle


Engle was released from the hospital sometime Sunday night and back home resting with his family.

Click here for more on the Antioch church shooting.