I am not a member of the LDS church, but I have always maintained that you can not ask for better neighbors than the Mormons. My wife and I lived in a small town (533 people) in Idaho for several years, and more than 60% of those around us practiced the Mormon faith. I could always count on more help than I needed if I ever asked for a hand. However, nothing my neighbors did for me holds a candle to the actions of Kent Hendrix. Mr. Hendrix, a Mormon Bishop in Salt Lake City, recently thwarted an attack on one of his neighbors – while wielding a 29 inch Samurai sword.
Hendrix, 47, was awakened by on of his sons pounding on his door and yelling that someone was being mugged in their front yard. As it turns out, a woman was being attacked by a stalker who had jumped her when she exited her house. Hendrix, a martial arts instructor who has been practicing with swords for over 20 years, grabbed the sword and rushed to the woman’s aide:
“His eyes got as big as saucers and he kind of gasped and jumped back,” Hendrix said by phone Tuesday afternoon. “He’s probably never had anyone draw a sword on him before.”
The man ran down the street with the barefoot Hendrix and others in pursuit. Hendrix said he couldn’t catch the man before he fled in his car, but he picked up ChapStick that the man dropped and memorized his license plate.
“I yelled at him, `I’ve got your DNA and I’ve got your license plate: You are so done,”‘ Hendrix said.
The suspect, 37-year-old Grant Eggersten, turned himself in to police an hour later, said Unified Police Lt. Justin Hoyal. He was booked on charges of robbery, attempted burglary, trespassing and violation of a stalking injunction.”
It turns out that Hendrix never needed to swing the sword. However, as is so often the case, the cowardly thug remembered he had somewhere else to be when confronted with armed resistance.
“That kind of thing doesn’t happen every day,” Hendrix said. “Our neighborhood is a pretty quiet place.”
A fourth-degree black belt in the Kishindo form of martial arts, Hendrix owns a collection of swords and weapons that he trains with, said his wife, Suzanne Hendrix. He has trained with the sword he used Tuesday for 20 years and keeps it by his bed.
“Some people have bats they go to,” said Hendrix. “I have my sword.”
Kudos to Mr. Hendrix. I prefer GunFu myself. But then again, I have neither trained with swords, nor have I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express lately.