Toni Braxton is playing Antoinette Tuff, real-life courageous woman who stopped a school shooting, in the Lifetime movie ‘Faith Under Fire.’ Get up to speed on Antoinette now!
1. Antoinette Tuff prevented a school shooting in an elementary school on Aug. 20, 2013. Antoinette was working in the front office of the Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy in Decatur, Georgia, when 20-year-old Michael Brandon Hill walked in with an AK-47 assault rifle and 500 rounds of ammunition. Michael told Antoinette that he was off his medication for a mental disorder, according to CNN. She was able to talk Michael into surrendering. The school contained more than 800 students and 100 employees. Not one person was injured.
2. She stayed on the phone with 911 for nearly 25 minutes while trying to calm Michael down. Michael asked Antoinette to call 911 from the office inside the school. She stayed on the line and talked him down. “It’s going to be all right, sweetie,” she told Michael at one point. “I just want you to know I love you, though, OK? And I’m proud of you. That’s a good thing that you’re just giving up and don’t worry about it. We all go through something in life. No, you don’t want that. You going to be OK.”
3. She had considered suicide after her husband left her. During the 911 call, Antoinette told Michael that she tried to commit suicide the year before. Antoinette and her husband separated in 2012 after 26 years of marriage. They have one child together, Derrick, who was diagnosed with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease.
4. Former President Barack Obama praised Antoinette for her bravery. He called her after she thwarted the attempted school shooting. “She was remarkable,” he told CNN in 2013. “When I heard the 911 call and read the sequence of events, I thought here’s someone’s who is not just courage, not just cool under pressure, but also had enough heart that somehow she could convince somebody that was really troubled that she cared about them.”
5. She’s released an autobiography! Prepared for a Purpose: The Inspiring True Story of How One Woman Saved an Atlanta School Under Siege was released in 2014.
Toni Braxton stars as Antoinette Tuff. Faith Under Fire also stars Yaya DaCosta as 911 operator Kendra McKay, Malik Yoba as Sergeant Franklin, Trevor Morgan as Michael Brandon Hill, and Shalaby Omar as Antoinette’s son, Derrick. The Lifetime movie premieres Jan. 17 at 8 p.m.
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