Even though Rayko Dig doesn't think of herself as a hero, she is and deserves to be recognized as such.
On Thursday, less than a week after a terrorist attack killed and injured innocent people attending an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, another tragedy nearly happened at Phoenix Comicon.
There, Matthew Sterling -- dressed as Marvel's The Punisher, wearing body armor (front-and-back), and armed with a shotgun, three handguns, numerous rounds of ammunition, a tactical knife, and pepper spray -- slipped past security and proceeded to the second floor of the convention center. Before carrying out his evil deed, he sent a series of text messages to Rayko Dig, an LA-based musician who Sterling only met once. He indicated to her a desire to get into a shootout with cops -- snapping and sending photos to her of potential targets -- and kill Mighty Morphin Power Rangers star Jason David Frank, who was a special guest at the event that day.
Recognizing that these messages weren't empty threats, Dig alerted law enforcement of the situation. "I gave all 40 screen shots of his messages he sent from Phoenix Comicon 2017 to the assigned detective in this case," Dig wrote on her Facebook page. "I have about 30 names both real and PKA [Professionally Known As] he mentioned."
Once police located the suspect, who was seated on a bench and reading a Comicon programming guide at that moment, they were able to subdue him -- though there was a struggle -- before he could use any of his weapons.
Dig later explained that she only met Sterling in July 2014, but after that, the overweight Mesa, AZ resident would often send her texts about how motivated he was to getting healthier. Things took a dark turn one year later when Sterling informed Dig that he was alegedly planning to rape and murder a famous cosplayer. And at that time, Dig reached out to warn the cosplayer, but that message went ignored.
Taking a moment to reflect on the past 24 hours, Dig wrote: "I am so glad for what I did. You bet I do it all over again, NO DOUBT. Not only JDF but all the cops he was threatening to kill and all con goers are alive today. Nothing made me smile bigger today than your loving words and all the messages I've been receiving from parents [whose] children were at the con yesterday..."
And earlier today, JDF made sure to thank her too. "Just have to say thank YOU Rayko for telling the police!" Frank exclaimed on his official Facebook page. [You're] my hero for saving all of us!! You did a great job for 'seeing something and saying something.' Let this be a wake up call to all the comicon's around the world we the people need better security measures. I've been saying this for years to every promoter. This could've turned in to a tragedy. To my families and friends thanks for being there for me. Let's enjoy this rest of the show and have some fun. [See] you today at Phoenix Comicon."