Waffle House hero raises nearly $140,000 for victims’ families

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James Shaw Jr. James Shaw Jr.
NASHVILLE (KAKE) -

The man who snatched an AR-15 rifle away from a gunman at a Nashville restaurant has raised, as of Wednesday morning, nearly $140,000 to help the victims and their families.

As the Tennessee House hailed him as a hero, James Shaw Jr. said he acted to save his own life early Sunday at a Waffle House, and saved others in the process.

"I never thought I'd be in a room with all the eyes on me, but you know, I'm very grateful to be here," Shaw told House members. The 29-year-old said he has since gone to see some of the shooting victims in the hospital and they all remembered him. He apologized to the people whose loved ones died in the attack.

Waffle House suspect: Erratic behavior years before shooting

The victims who lost their lives in Sunday's shooting -- Sanderlin, Joe R. Perez, DeEbony Groves and Akilah DaSilva -- were all young people of color.

Four white crosses outside the restaurant offer silent tribute to the slain victims. The restaurant is working on erecting a permanent memorial in their honor.

Alleged shooter Travis Reinking was arrested Monday after a woman spotted him walking through her construction site.

Court records show his $2 million bond was revoked by a Tennessee judge on Tuesday.

The Waffle House reopened its doors Wednesday morning for the first time since the shooting. And it has a plan to commemorate Sunday's victims.

CNN and The Associated Press contributed to this report.