Coffee County Raider Academy student saved the life of another from an attacking dog


Nic Watkins, Sports Editor

16-year-old Danny Hawkins attends church hebdomadally and this week was no exception except this instance a large dog had attacked a man going into church and Hawkins was called to action!

Hawkins is your normal freshmen. An energetic, nerdy, and outgoing student who loves to be around his friends.

Hawkins had been in church attendance for a little over a year now and has been seen there time and time again attending the youth group as well as a New Members Class where he met the man attacked, Ronnie Gray.

The first time he walked into the church building he had been a shy student who did not seem like he wanted others to communicate with him, but overtime Hawkins grew with the church family at Trinity Baptist and had even joined the church band where he pursued his guitar career.

On September 20, 2020, Hawkins saw Gray, age 79, being attacked outside the building by a pit bull. Fearing the worst he went over to check on the man and tried to free him from the canine.

Gray stated the dog, “hit me in the back of the left leg causing me to lose balance and fall on the pavement.” After seeing this Hawkins who was inside the building rushed to help Gray.

As his adrenaline pumped, he realized this dog could hurt the man or worse. Gray stated he was “helpless and at the mercy of the very large animal.” Hawkins plucked the beast away by the collar and dragged him away from Gray until he was safe inside. 

Gray was very grateful for the heroics that Hawkins had completed for him. Hawkins not only saved Mr. Gray but his wife, Carol Gray, who could have also been injured because she was next to him while avoiding the dog.

Hawkins had insisted on letting the animal go, so until church ended they decided to put the animal into a fence next to the church. The animal quickly jumped over the fence and Hawkins and Gray had to look towards the next solution. 

The police had to be called, due to the overwhelming chance that the dog could injure or hurt another person who was around the area. Gray once again thanked Hawkins as they went their separate ways for different church services.

Danny thought the praise was over, but local youth pastor Tim Forsythe praised the teen in front of his peers in the youth group for his heroics. Forsythe talked to Danny about this after and even stated he, “was happy to know that one of his students helped.”

All in all, even though the two have since been going to different church services from each other, both will have a friendship from this event for a long time.