By Holly Yan, CNN—
Behind Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker’s warm, disarming smile is a leader who’s willing to attack an armed man holding his congregants hostage.
On Saturday, a stranger knocked on the door of Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Texas. The rabbi, assuming the stranger needed shelter from the cold, invited him in and made him tea, Cytron-Walker told CBS on Monday.
But moments later, the stranger made clear he had a gun and took the rabbi and three others hostage. The ordeal dragged on for 11 hours, and the crisis was starting to deteriorate.
“In the last hour of our hostage crisis, the gunman became increasingly belligerent and threatening,” Cytron-Walker said a statement provided to CNN.
Fortunately, the rabbi knew what to do. He told CBS he waited for the right moment before throwing a chair at the assailant — buying enough time for himself and two others to run out.
“Over the years, my congregation and I have participated in multiple security courses from the Colleyville Police Department, the FBI, the Anti-Defamation League, and Secure Community Network,” Cytron-Walker said in the written statement.
“We are alive today because of that education.” Continue Reading…