World & Nation

Seattle school names scholarship after student who stopped gunman

Jon Meis
Jon Meis, the Seattle Pacific University student who has been hailed a hero for tackling a gunman who attacked the campus earlier this month, will have a scholarship named in his honor.
(Dean Rutz / Seattle Times)

Seattle Pacific University has named a scholarship after the student who heroically tackled a gunman who opened fire on campus earlier this month.

University President Dan Martin said Saturday that an engineering scholarship will be named after Jon Meis, the 22-year-old senior electrical engineering major who subdued a gunman during an attack in a campus building on June 5, according to the school’s official Twitter account.

Meis was working as a building monitor inside Otto Miller Hall when the attacker, later identified by Seattle police as 26-year-old Aaron Ybarra, burst in with a shotgun and a knife. The gunman opened fire, killing 19-year-old student Paul Lee and wounding three others.

But as the gunman was reloading, Meis blasted him with pepper spray and tackled him to the floor. Ybarra is being held without bail on suspicion of premeditated first-degree murder and first-degree assault.


School spokeswoman Tracy Norlen told the Los Angeles Times that the details and language of the scholarship are “still being worked out.” The award will be given to “engineering students who reflect the spirit of SPU and live a life beyond themselves for the benefit of others,” she said. 

Students gave Meis a standing ovation after Martin made the announcement at the school’s graduation ceremony Saturday, according to the university’s Twitter.

Meis has said little about the incident, releasing a statement through the university earlier this week.

“What I find most difficult about this situation is the devastating reality that a hero cannot come without tragedy,” he said.


Los Angeles Times staff writer Paresh Dave contributed to this report.

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