Jason Derfuss discovered that books in his backpack protected him from a bullet fired during Thursday's campus shooting

By Samantha McIntyre
Updated November 22, 2014 04:30 PM
Courtesy Jason Derfuss

Florida State University student Jason Derfuss heard a gunshot last Thursday as he left the campus’s Strozier Library, but what the 21-year-old humanities student didn t realize was that he was the target of the gunman who opened fire on students studying in the school library.

Derfuss posted the account on his Facebook page after finding the books he had checked out earlier that evening ripped apart by a single bullet in his bag.

“Earlier tonight there was a shooting at FSU, right as I was leaving Strozier. I didn’t know this at the time, but the Shooter targeted me first. The shot I heard behind me I did not feel, nor did it hit me at all. He was about 5 feet from me, but he hit my books. Books one minute earlier I had checked out of the library, books that should not have stopped the bullet. But they did. I learned this about 3 hours after it happened, I never thought to check my bag. I assumed I wasn’t a target, I assumed I was fine. The truth is I was almost killed tonight and God intervened. I know conceptually He can do all things, but to physically witness the impossible and to be surrounded by such grace is indescribable. To God be the glory, forever and ever, Amen.”

In an interview with NBC News, Derfuss says he feels lucky to be alive. “It s crazy: One minute I am checking out books and the next I am crying on my bedroom floor thinking I shouldn’t be alive. Those books saved me, and God saved me.”

Three students were wounded in the shooting. Police have identified the gunman as former FSU alumnus Myron May, who was fatally shot by police during the attack.

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