Connect with us

Remember This Fireman Who Saved This Little Boy from Texas Massacre?


Remember This Fireman Who Saved This Little Boy from Texas Massacre?

Remember This Fireman Who Saved This Little Boy from Texas Massacre?

On a bright day on November 5th, 2017, a madman named Devin Patrick Kelley stormed into the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas. He shot two people on the way in and then opened up on the 50 or so congregants inside. He killed 26 people that day… many were children. Eventually, he would die himself.

It was a horrific massacre that shocked Texas and the nation. Kelley wounded 20 other people as well, making it the worst church shooting in American history.

One of the first responders to arrive on the scene was Stockdale Volunteer Fire Department firefighter Rusty Duncan. When he walked into the church it was a scene straight out of a slaughterhouse. It was quiet as a tomb. People — some dead, some wounded, some too terrified to speak — were hiding under and between the pews. “I was just checking for survivors, and I felt a little tug on my pant leg,” he told the San Antonio Express-News. “I looked down and a little hand was coming from under somebody.” That tiny little hand belonged to six year-old Ryland Ward who had survived against all odds that day. “A little hand grabbed my pant leg. I just saw his eyes looking up at me and I knew I had to get him out of there,” he said.

Ryland’s stepmother, Joann Ward, had died shielding him during Kelley’s rampage, her body protecting him from the worst of the gunfire. Even so, the child was hit five times and he was in bad shape. Ryland lost his stepmother and two sisters that terrible day.

Posted by Jourdanton Police Department on Wednesday, December 13, 2017

“His arm’s messed up where he was shot,” his grandmother Sandra Ward explained to NBC News. “His lower intestine, his bladder — it just goes on and on.” But the child survived and that was a miracle all by itself. Duncan had no idea how badly Ryland was hurt. It didn’t matter, he scooped him up off the floor and ran him to an ambulance, which whisked him away to San Antonio’s University Hospital. Little Ryland would be there for two months recovering from his injuries.

People all over the world pitched in to help Ryland while he got well. They sent him thousands of Christmas cards and they raised approximately $160,000 through GoFundMe. But the one person who was always there for Ryland was Duncan, who visited him in the hospital. When Duncan first saw Ryland being wheeled out in a children’s wagon from his room, trailing a bundle of monitors, he asked Ryland if he knew who he was. Ryland’s great-uncle Earl McMahan was there for the encounter and said, “They stared at each other for what seemed like eternity, though it was probably a few minutes. I don’t think there was a dry eye in the lobby.” Duncan and his family visited Ryland often in the hospital, promising the boy a ride in a fire truck once the doctors gave him the green light to head home.

When Ryland was able to finally leave the hospital, Duncan was there again and he had arranged a special ride home for the young survivor. Over 50 people were also waiting to greet the little boy. Some held signs welcoming him, others waved Texas flags or hoisted balloons at a highway intersection near the crime scene and roadside memorial.

Ryland was “ready to get in the truck right away,” Duncan said. “He wanted to go faster. He wanted the siren to be louder, and he wanted me to honk more at all the people,” he said. “He was having a blast.” The little boy got to sit up front in a fire truck leading a convoy that stretched some 100-vehicles long. “He’s one happy little boy right now,” Wilson County Fire Marshal Edwin Baker said. “He got to ride in a fire truck and talk on the radio, and he was a captain for the day.”

Observers noted how happy Ryland looked, comparing him to “a kid on Christmas morning.” The boy’s grandmother said the child had more than earned the ride. “He deserves it if any kid does,” she said. How can you not smile and cry over that? It’s such a happy moment out of such a horrific tragedy, it’s hard to process. But for one day, a little boy from Texas who survived was happy and that’s what matters here.

UPDATE: 6-year-old Ryland Ward, at the family home he and his brother are remodeling in La Vernia, Texas. Ward lost his wife and two daughters in the shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs. Ryland, who was shot four times in the massacre, has undergone several surgeries and hours of physical therapy.

In the nearly months since the shooting, Ryland has had countless surgeries and hours of physical therapy.

He’s also gotten hundreds of toys from well-wishers around the world, so many they’re stacked floor to ceiling in Chris’ home. Ryland made friends with the man who helped save him, an emergency worker named Rusty Duncan, who has become like family to the Wards.

He rode in a real-life firetruck. He celebrated his sixth birthday.

“He got shot there and it kind of messed everything up,” Chris says matter-of-factly, pointing to Ryland’s stomach. The bag should be removed by July, he says, and eventually Ryland should have full use of his left leg and arm. “It’s getting better. He’s a lot stronger.”

He knows one day he’ll be done on the job site, Ryland will be in school and he’ll probably be back in his job as a truck driver. One day, he knows he’ll have to talk about what happened in the church last November.

But not yet.

“Next time,” Chris says. “Maybe I can talk more.”

Continue Reading
You may also like...


  1. gamefly free trial

    May 28, 2019 at 7:00 pm

    For most up-to-date information you have to visit web and on the web I found this
    website as a most excellent web site for most up-to-date updates.

  2. gamefly free trial

    June 1, 2019 at 12:55 pm

    I’m truly enjoying the design and layout of your site.

    It’s a very easy on the eyes which makes it much more enjoyable for me to come here and visit more often. Did you hire out a developer to create your theme?
    Exceptional work!

  3. gamefly free trial

    June 3, 2019 at 8:36 am

    Hi there, I read your blog on a regular basis. Your story-telling style is awesome, keep up the good work!

  4. gamefly free trial

    June 5, 2019 at 4:55 am

    I am in fact grateful to the holder of this web page who has shared this enormous
    post at here.

  5. gamefly free trial

    June 6, 2019 at 6:38 am

    You can certainly see your expertise in the article
    you write. The world hopes for more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to mention how they believe.
    Always go after your heart.

  6. gamefly free trial

    June 7, 2019 at 1:20 am

    Right away I am ready to do my breakfast, once having my breakfast coming yet again to read more news.

  7. ps4 gamestop

    June 8, 2019 at 2:51 am

    For most up-to-date news you have to pay a quick visit internet and on the web I
    found this web page as a most excellent website for most up-to-date

  8. playstation 4 best games ever made 2019

    June 11, 2019 at 5:38 pm

    Hello it’s me, I am also visiting this web site on a regular basis, this website is in fact good and the people are truly sharing pleasant thoughts.

  9. quest bars

    June 16, 2019 at 12:42 pm

    Definitely believe that which you said. Your favorite reason appeared to
    be on the net the easiest thing to be aware of. I say to
    you, I certainly get annoyed while people consider worries that they just do not know
    about. You managed to hit the nail upon the
    top and also defined out the whole thing without having side-effects ,
    people can take a signal. Will likely be back to get
    more. Thanks


    June 17, 2019 at 7:10 am

    Hi there! Quick question that’s totally off topic.
    Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My site
    looks weird when browsing from my iphone4. I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to correct this issue.
    If you have any recommendations, please share. Thank you!

  11. plenty of fish dating site

    June 21, 2019 at 9:49 pm

    You can definitely see your enthusiasm in the article you write.
    The arena hopes for even more passionate writers such as you who are not afraid to mention how they believe.
    Always follow your heart.

  12. quest bars cheap

    June 23, 2019 at 3:08 am

    Quality posts is the important to attract the viewers to pay
    a visit the website, that’s what this web page is providing.


    July 1, 2019 at 8:02 am

    Why visitors still use to read news papers when in this technological globe all is existing on net?

  14. quest bars cheap 2019 coupon

    July 9, 2019 at 1:45 am

    Hi to every one, as I am truly eager of reading this weblog’s
    post to be updated daily. It includes nice stuff.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Trending Now


To Top