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Son of president, founder of temple killed says father was a hero

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OAK CREEK -- One of those killed by gunman Wade Michael Page during Sunday's shooting at the Sikh Temple in Oak Creek was Satwant Kaleka Singh, the 65-year-old president and founder of the temple. Kaleka's son and nephew say Kaleka tried to fend off Page with the only weapon he could find -- a butter knife.

Amardeep Kaleka told FOX6 News he got a call from his brother Sunday that the Sikh Temple was under fire. As he headed in the direction of the temple, the next call was from his father's phone, but his father was not on the line. Instead, it was a temple priest.

The priest told Kaleka his father was wounded and would not survive.

When police arrived, Kaleka said they told him there was a butter knife near his father's body. Kaleka says he believes his father fought off the gunman as long as he could, buying time for his wife and others who were hiding in a closet.

Kaleka said he knows his father was a hero -- sacrificing much to build a life in America for his family, and proudly flying the American flag at his home.

"The way he handled it exemplifies who he was. He did everything he could for the congregation. Everything. Unfortunately he gave his life to the very end," Kaleka's nephew said.

Amardeep Kaleka says Sunday was not the first time his father came face to face with violence. Years ago, he was attacked as he worked at a gas station, after coming to this country to escape persecution.

CLICK HERE for additional Sikh Temple shooting coverage via FOX6Now.com.

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