Jaque Stunich, 74, saw an officer struggling with a young man while he was driving down Main Street Tuesday and headed to help.
"I grabbed my cane and I was going to go over there with the intention of hitting him in the head," explained Stunich.
Stunich is battling esophageal cancer. He has a wound in his throat following surgery and survives on a feeding tube.
He fell and dropped his cane when he went to help the officer, but a man who happened to be on a ride-along with the officer jumped into action and they teamed up.
"We rolled him over on his back with the patrolman rolled over and got on him chest to chest, that's when I saw the guy with his hand on the patrolman's gun," he said.
Stunich gathered all of his strength
"I pried his fingers off the butt of the gun and I put my knee on his wrist on the concrete and I bent his wrist back. I was hoping to break it," he explained.
Officers arrived and arrested the man.
The El Cajon Police Department plans to honor Stunich with a medal. He can add it to his collection because the war hero already has a bronze medal with the "v" for valor in Vietnam.