DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – An Oregon District shooting survivor who has been hailed as a hero says he and many others are still recovering more than four months later.
Jeremy Ganger, a bouncer at Ned Peppers who has been credited with saving lives during the mass shooting, told 2 NEWS his life has completely changed since August 4.
The “Dayton Strong” signs still hang around the Oregon District, now along with the wreaths and lights for the holiday season. But for Ganger, it has been difficult to celebrate.
“I still have a lot of guilt about what could have been done,” Ganger said. “That’s part of my problem I’m going through.”
Ganger was working the night of the shooting and helped get people inside the bar as the shots rang out.
“When that guy came around the corner, I stood there, he just looked at me, and for some reason, he paused for a split second and fortunately enough there were true heroes that night, all six of those guys were able to take care of him without hesitation,” he said.
After the gunman was taken down by police right in front of the bar, Ganger got the gun out of his hands.
Ganger told 2 NEWS he returned to work soon after the tragedy but struggles with PTSD.
“I still don’t sleep,” Ganger said. “Still have the same dreams over and over and certain things still bother me a lot more than normal.”
Since the shooting, Ganger has been recognized for his actions by many people and organizations, including local children, the state legislature and – last month – the WWE.
“I’m not a hero,” Ganger said. “I was just doing my job that night. Like I said before, the true heroes that night are the Dayton Police Department.”
Business at Ned’s is slightly lower than normal, Ganger said, but in recent weeks, it has picked up as more people return to East Fifth Street.
“The future of the entire Oregon [District] is going to be great again,” Ganger said. “‘Cause everyone’s still building back up, but everyone’s coming back out again.”
Ganger was hospitalized for three days due to shrapnel in his leg and suffered nerve damage there.
Ganger told 2 NEWS he keeps in touch with other survivors, which has helped him in the healing process.