36-year-old Kelly Herron is a marathon trainer who was going for a daily workout through Seattle’s Golden Gardens Park when she ran into her worst nightmare. She stopped to use a restroom in the park when she was assaulted by a man hiding in the toilet stall.
“As I was drying my hands, I became aware that something was wrong,” Herron told ABC News. She says she turned around to see 40-year-old Gary Steiner, who immediately charged her.
“He immediately took me down to the ground, hit both my knees and legs, and then it was a fight on the bathroom floor, and I just kept screaming, ‘Not today, motherfucker!'”
It was a grueling fight that eventually moved to the bathroom stall, where Herron “stopped playing by the rules” and relentlessly scratched Steiner on his face. She finally was able to momentarily shake him off and run out of the bathroom. A nearby park guest had a carabiner that they used to lock the bathroom door.
Herron told her story on Instagram, where it has been liked over 26,000 times:
Despite her harrow assault, Herron has said that her marathon training schedule is going forward at full speed.
Herron has urged all women to know their strength, and to take self defense classes.
“I learned hard bones and soft fleshy places, so I just started hitting the side of his head,” she said. Herron says that women should fight hard, and be loud.
To her attacker, she just repeats her new mantra: Not today motherfucker.
Gary Steiner was arrested at the scene and is being held on $750,000 bail. He has a record of multiple assaults against women dating all the way back to the early 1990s.