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6-Year-Old Ryland Ward Goes Home From Hospital in Fine Style

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Ryland Ward, a 6-year-old boy who was among the dozens of parishioners who were shot on November 5, 2017, at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, has finally been sent home from the hospital, and he got to go there in style!

Last fall, when a gunman opened fire inside that rural Texas church, 26 parishioners were killed. Among the dead where Ryland’s stepmom and two sisters. Twenty additional people were injured, including Ryland, who had been shot five times. He sustained injuries which would require a number of surgeries, but he pulled through, and on Thursday, January 11, he rode home in the front seat of a firetruck.

Just days after the shooting incident, Ryland’s grandmother told NBC News, “His arm’s messed up where he was shot. His lower intestine, his bladder — it just goes on and on.” But, he was a fighter, and fireman Rusty Duncan, who was among some of the first people on the scene at the church, knew that from the moment he saw him. Seeing Ryland amidst the bloodshed, he told the news, “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.”

6-Year-Old Ryland Ward Goes Home From Hospital in Fine Style

Photo: Facebook/WKIK 102.9 FM

Over the course of the coming days and weeks of Ryland’s hospital surgeries and recovery, Duncan and his family visited the little boy often, and he promised him that once he was given the approval for release, he could take a ride in a fire truck. When that day came, Ryland was “ready to get in the truck right away,” explained Duncan. “He wanted to go faster. He wanted the siren to be louder, and he wanted me to honk more at all the people…He was having a blast.” And, his obvious joy at the experience was palpable. Onlookers couldn’t help but see it on his face. Noting the fear and trauma Ryland has recently been through, his grandmother commented, “He deserves it if any kid does.”

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