'I Shot Bin Laden' - Nation Split Over Navy SEAL Going Public
He's out of the shadows. Former Navy SEAL Rob O’Neill made his first public appearance since he was revealed to be the hero who killed Osama bin Laden.
O’Neill got a standing ovation when he took the stage at a business event Thursday night in Tennessee. The 38-year-old now makes his living as a motivational speaker.
He said, "I am proud of what I did but my mission didn't end because I left the battlefield."
He didn't address the new revelations about his role in the bin Laden raid, which was famously portrayed in the movie, Zero Dark Thirty.
O’Neill’s new-found fame as bin Laden’s killer has put the spotlight on him and security was especially intense.
INSIDE EDITION’s Les Trent spoke to former Navy SEAL Jonathan Gilliam, who said he was concerned that O’Neill’s father had issued this challenge to ISIS terrorists: "I’ll paint a big target on my front door and say come and get us." [Source: Daily Mail]
Gilliam responded, "This isn't the movies. If you want to make a statement like that, you better be ready to stay awake 24 hours a day."
The camouflage jacket O’Neill wore the night of the bin Laden mission now hangs at the 9/11 Memorial Museum in New York City. But until now, no one knew it was O’Neill’s.
O’Neill is scheduled to tell all about bin Laden’s death in an interview to air on Fox News next week. He was interviewed by reporter Peter Doocy.
Doocy said on Fox News, "This summer something happened, that we covered in the special, where he decided, 'Now, I want to tell my story. Now, I want to reveal myself.'"
INSIDE EDITION viewers are split about O’Neill’s decision to go public.
"He’s a true hero," one says on our Facebook page. But another calls him "narcissistic."
INSIDE EDITION viewer Helen R Little said, "The thing that bother me most about this story, regarding the Navy SEAL is that he is talking about it in the first place."
INSIDE EDITION viewer Kevin McDonald said, "For the safety of his family, when it comes to classified information, we should probably bring back 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.'"
There are also skeptics who claim we'll never know for sure which member of SEAL Team Six fired the lethal shot. Was it really Rob O’Neil? Mark Bissonnette, the former SEAL Team six commando who wrote the bestselling book, No Easy Day, says otherwise.
In a front-page headline Friday, the Washington Post flat-out calls O’Neill: "Bin Laden’s Killer." Which certainly makes him worthy of that standing ovation.
Hear From O'Neill's Childhood Friend