(August 6, 2012)–If it wasn’t for these two men (as well as Officer Murphy’s partner) many more innocent people may have died.
Lieutenant Brian Murphy is a 20-year veteran of the Oak Creek police department and remains in critical condition at Freedtert Hospital’s ICU following Sunday morning’s shooting at the Sikh Temple in Oak Creek.
Lt. Murphy was among the first responders to the scene following the initial 911 calls that came from the Gurdwara just before 10:30 a.m. Sunday. He came upon a victim in the parking lot and began attending to that victim–providing aid. At that time, Lt. Murphy was “ambushed” by the shooter, now identified as Wade Michael Page.
Lt. Murphy had been shot eight to nine times when other responding officers carried him away from the scene. He was then taken to Freedtert Hospital. Lt. Murphy had two surgeries at Froedtert Sunday night, and is said to be resting with family. Officials say they expect Lt. Murphy to be okay.
Another Oak Creek police officer engaged Page, an “active shooter,” and struck him with gunfire, killing him outside the Gurdwara.
Shaheed Bhai Satwant Singh Kaleka was 62 years old. He was the president of the Gurdwara at the time and was getting ready to deliver a speech. Page, the shooter, walked in, armed with a 9mm handgun.
Satwant Singh approached him in the lobby and tried to stop him from hurting others and disrespecting Guru Sahib. From what we understand, he attempted to use a kirpan or talwar to attack and tackle the shooter but was shot in the back after a struggle. This is the correct use of a kirpan, protecting the innocent and those that are unable to protect themselves.
He was unable to stop the shooter though and tried to find cover. He died from his injuries within the Gurdwara.
Amardeep Kaleka, Satwant Singh’s son said he got a call from his father’s cellphone. But instead of his father on the line, it was a Granthi. He told him his father, Satwant Singh Kaleka, was wounded, saying “He’s at my feet. He’s laying on the ground.”
Amardeep adds that he’s been told his father died doing his best “to protect the temple, his family, his wife and all his friends.” Blood trails, he continued, indicate that the gunman was “slowed … enough so that other people could get to safety.”
“It’s … exactly who he was,” Amardeep Kaleka said. “There was no way on God’s green earth that he would allow” the gunman to attack those at the temple without being challenged.
Satwant Singh Kaleka was the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin’s president and one of its founders. He “brought everyone together. He just wanted to make a good temple, a good community,” temple member Lahwinder Singh tells Milwaukee’s Journal Sentinel.
Interview with Amardeep:Sikh24 Editors can be reached at @