May 30, 2018 was a special day in Springfield, Illinois, when Governor Bruce Rauner declared the date Officer Mark Dallas Day.
“Officer Dallas’ bravery and quick action prevented what could have been an unimaginable tragedy,” Governor Rauner said, as reported by ABC 7 Chicago.
Mark Dallas is a school resource officer at Dixon High School. Earlier in May, Dallas prevented a school shooting at the school when he confronted a gunman in the high school gym where his son, Josh, was practicing.
“I heard several shots ring out. In my heart I knew exactly what it was,” Dallas said. “I saw the shooter heading towards the doors of the gymnasium, it appeared he was attempting to go in, I let out some type of yell, I don’t know what I said, but I yelled at the top of my lungs.”
Dallas pursued the suspect until he was outside and unable to harm any other students.
“I seen a long gun that I was familiar with and him running and then turning and shooting several rounds at me,” Dallas said.
Dallas and the shooter exchanged fire and the suspect surrendered after becoming wounded. No one else was harmed during the crossfire.
Dallas was also honored in the Senate and House for being a “hometown hero.”
“We’ve done all this in an effort to create a day that you won’t forget, because on May 16th, you gave us a day we will never forget,” Senator Tim Bivins (R-Dixon) said.
Dallas said that he understands some people want to call him a hero. He told reporters, however, that he would much rather just wear the title “dad.”