THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (KFOR) — The sheriff’s sergeant killed in the mass shooting at a California bar graduated from the University of Oklahoma.
Late Wednesday, Ventura County Sheriff’s Deputy Sgt. Ron Helus responded to the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, California in reference to a shooting.
KFOR in Oklahoma City, Okla., reported that Sgt. Ron Helus had been set to retire in the next year from the Ventura County, California Sheriff’s Office when, responding late Wednesday to a call of a shooting, he entered the Borderline Bar & Grill
Officials say a gunman burst into a packed bar in Southern California and opened fire on people line dancing, killing at least 12 people before he was found dead at the scene.
Helus, a 29-year law enforcement veteran, was among those killed when he tried to stop the gunman.
“He went into save lives, to save other people.” Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean said of Helus. “He was totally committed, he gave his all, and tonight, as I told his wife, he died a hero.”
Helus succumbed to his wounds at a hospital, police said. He is also survived by a son.
According to OU Alumni, Helus graduated from the university with his Master’s degree.
“Today the OU Alumni community grieves with the friends and family of one of our own, OU Graduate Sgt. Ron Helus, MA ’16, and all those who lost their lives to the senseless violence last night in California,” OU Alumni tweeted.
The Ventura County Sheriff’s Office says Helus was set to retire next year.