SUTHERLAND SPRINGS, Texas – Before Nov. 5, 2017, not many people knew about or had even heard of Sutherland Springs. The small community in Wilson County, southeast of San Antonio, is now a part of a growing list of sites of mass shootings. Two years later much has changed, including two key individuals of the community running for office in 2020.
First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs pastor Frank Pomeroy has launched a campaign to run for state Senate District 21, and the man who shot the shooter, Stephen Willeford, recently told the Express-News he plans on running for county commissioner in Wilson County.
After the deadly shooting two years ago, both men were thrown into the mainstream spotlight.
Pomeroy has been invited to the White House for the National Day of Prayer and has commented about the change that needs to happen in order to better prevent shootings.
After the El Paso shooting this year, Pomeroy said teaching morality to young people is key to preventing mass shootings.
"The more we step away from morality and teaching our young people to respect life and one another and look more to a self-centered and egocentric viewpoint in life, the more we are going to have these tragedies," Pomeroy said.
Willeford has since become a frequent speaker and advocate for the National Rifle Association.
The seat Pomeroy is seeking has been held by state Sen. Judith Zaffirni, a Democrat, since 1987, and Willeford will be seeking the Precinct 3 spot, which is held by incumbent Ernest "Skip" Hajek.