ARLINGTON, TX — “T.J. Antell, South Central. Let’s get ready to go.”
“Ready to go” is certainly how his friends describe Antell, and tragically, it’s how he lost his life.
“That’s the type of man TJ was,” said Rock It CrossFit owner Jake Mizell. “He saw someone that was obviously in great need at that time. He stepped forth to take charge and try to stop the bad guy. He’s a hero.”
It happened in a flash.
Ricci Bradden, an active duty Army private stationed at Fort Hood, is accused of shooting his wife, Quinisha Johnson, in front of the Arlington Walgreens where she works. We’re told the dispute and shooting happened all because Johnson posted a photo on Facebook that Bradden thought was too suggestive.
Without thinking twice, Antell stormed into action.
The former Marine grabbed his concealed carry gun and approached Bradden, trying to make a citizen’s arrest. But Arlington police say Bradden fired again, killing the wannabe Good Samaritan.
Reverend Marc Lowrance, the senior minister at St. John the Apostle United Methodist Church in Arlington, got to know the Antells over the years. They attended church there, and Lowrance saw a natural protector in T.J.
“He had that protective mode. He was very much a protector and provider for his family,” Lowrance said. “It probably was just an instinctive response.”
As owners of local CrossFit gym, CrossFit Abattoir, Antell and his wife, Crystal, are part of an extended family of CrossFitters in the area.
That’s why competing gym owner Jake Mizell (Rock It CrossFit) stepped in, starting a GoFundMe page that’s getting stronger by the minute.
“I really wanted to tell people about how great TJ was and wanted to help his wife out, help Crystal out,” Mizell said.
Now Crystal Antell is left to raise their three kids while Bradden’s in jail in Arlington charged with murder.
The worst part: it might all be over a fight on Facebook.
We gotta do better, y’all.