Army Veteran Was Shot 7 Times As He Protected Fellow Students From Gunman, Family Says

An army veteran was shot seven times while trying to save other students during the Oregon shooting, according to reports.

Family members say Chris Mintz, a 30-year-old dad of one, tried to protect classmates after a gunman opened fire at Umpqua Community College on Thursday morning, killing nine people and leaving others wounded.

Read: Before Shootings, Gunman Apparently Wrote Online: 'The More People You Kill, The More You're in the Limelight'

Mintz's aunt, Sheila Brown, told NBC: "We were told he did heroic things to protect some people."

He was shot in the back, abdomen and hands, and also suffered two broken legs, according to reports. He has undergone surgery and is awake and smiling in hospital, images show.

“It was a great, great shock," his aunt said. "We’ve all been sitting on pins and needles and praying very hard."

On Facebook, a friend posted on Mintz's Facebook early on Friday morning: "Chris asked me to thank everyone for their support, he is grateful and keeping our community and all victims in his thoughts."

A second post added: "He is resting and in pain but smiling and the same ol Chris."

Read: Gunman Kills 9 at Oregon Community College After Telling Them to State Their Religions

Mintz served in the Army between May 2004 and March 2007, records show. During his service, he received awards including the National Defense Service Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. He grew up in North Carolina and was stationed in Fort Lewis, Washington, but relocated to Oregon to raise his son.

Mintz is one of seven injured in the shooting. Ten other people died, including gunman Chris Harper-Marcer, 26, who was shot dead by deputies responding to 911 calls.

A Gofundme account has been set up for Mintz.

Watch Below: Witnesses Say Oregon College Gunman Asked Students Their Religions