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6-year-old victim of Sutherland Springs masscre going home today

Silvia Foster-FrauJanuary 11, 2018

At around 1 p.m. today, 6-year-old Ryland Ward is expected to be released from University Hospital in San Antonio and taken home in a cherry red fire truck driven by Rusty Duncan, the man who saved his life.

A member of the Stockdale Volunteer Fire Department, he was the first to find Ryland at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, where 26 people were killed by the gunman Devin Kelley on Nov. 5.

RELATED: Victims of Sutherland Springs church shooting officially identified

Sutherland Springs residents are expected to line the town’s main street for the little boy’s homecoming.

Ryland Ward was shot five times and still alive beneath his mother, Joann Ward, who died protecting him. A survivor of the worst mass shooting in Texas history, Ryland was taken in an ambulance from Sutherland Springs to the intensive care unit at San Antonio’s University Hospital.

Duncan recalls the quiet of the church when he first walked in, minutes after the massacre. He recalls not knowing who was alive and who was dead. He also recalls the tug on his pant leg from Ryland — the only way he knew the boy was alive.

For more of the story on Ryland and Duncan’s extraordinary bond, read the Express-News article here.

Silvia Foster-Frau is a San Antonio Express-News staff writer. Read more of her stories here. | sfosterfrau@express-news.net | @SilviaElenaFF

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