It was every parent’s worst nightmare. A 9-year-old boy was kidnapped while walking his dog in Atlanta earlier this month, leaving his family terrified.
After driving the boy around for about three hours, the kidnapper reportedly dropped him off. He was completely unharmed physically.
The astonishing reason why the kidnapper may have let him go has now been revealed: A gospel song. Willie Myrick, 9, says he sang the gospel song “Every Praise” until the moment his captor let him go free.
“He opened the door and threw me out,” Myrick told WXIA-TV. “He told me not to tell anyone.”
On Thursday, “community leaders held a meeting in Willie’s honor, celebrating his happy ending, but also telling other parents and children what to do if this happens to them,” the report adds.
If there’s one downside to this story, it’s that the boy’s kidnapper is still on the loose.
After Myrick’s story went viral, Grammy Award-winning gospel singer Hezekiah Walker felt moved to fly to Atlanta to meet the 9-year-old boy. It was Walker who wrote the song that he sang during his frightening ordeal.
“It’s just emotional to me because you never know who you’re going to touch,” Walker told WXIA-TV. “I just wanted to hug him and tell him I love him.”
During the gathering at Mt. Carmel Baptist Church on Thursday, Walker did exactly that, wrapping up a teary-eyed Myrick in his arms as the crowd gave them both a standing ovation.
The entire church then sang “Every Praise” together, the song that just may have saved Myrick’s life.
Listen to the song below:
(H/T: The Grio)