LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3.com) -- Joseph Wilcox was returning a computer modem to the Nellis Boulevard Walmart on Sunday when Jerad and Amanda Miller stormed the store.
In a news conference Monday, Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie called Wilcox a hero.
The 31-year-old Wilcox had a concealed weapons permit and was carrying a handgun when he decided to confront what he thought was a lone gunman.
Wilcox went after Jerad Miller, unknowingly passing by his wife, Amanda Miller, who also was armed.
"It was like a war zone there," said Jeremy Tanner, who has been friends with Wilcox for 16 years and was with him at Walmart when the mayhem unfolded. "We hear this guy coming and yelling, 'This is a revolution! Get out or we will shoot you.' I stayed at the entrance hoping he would turn around and we could leave together."
But Wilcox didn't return. Police say when Wilcox confronted Jared, Amanda opened fire, shooting him once in the ribs. He died at the scene.
Debra Wilcox, his mother, received the horrible news at 2 a.m. that the bystander killed was in fact her son.
"Joseph was also headstrong," Debra Wilcox said Monday. "He was going to do something if he thought it was the right thing to do, no matter what we said to him."
"I am waiting for him to walk up and (I’d) say, 'Joseph do you hear what everyone is saying about you? I knew it.' But he can't hear it," his mother said.
As difficult as this is for her to understand, Wilcox described her son as the type of person who wanted to protect the defenseless, even hoping to one day wear a badge like Metro officers.
A memorial service has yet to be planned. The Wilcox family is emotionally preparing for the moment they have to claim their loved one from the Clark County coroner's office.