An ex-convict getting a second chance at life as an auto repairman got a chance of his own to save a life last week when he saw a toddler crawling near the edge of a highway.
And he made the most of it, with some help from gospel music.
“I had seen something out of the corner of my eye, and I thought it was a baby,” Bryant Collins told 11Alive, the NBC affiliate in Atlanta. “I just stopped and, when I got out, there was a baby … almost in the highway.”
The little girl was 300 yards from her home when Collins ran across her at the edge of State Route 72 in rural Madison County, Ga. (population 28,000).
Collins got the child safely inside his vehicle, then called 911.
While deputies were on the scene, the girl’s father arrived, screaming “that’s my child,” the Athens Banner-Herald reported. The man scuffled with deputies while trying to grab the girl and was arrested on charges obstruction and reckless conduct over the confrontation. He also faces a child cruelty charge, apparently in connection with the girl being left alone in the first place.
He is also c.
The girl’s mother told deputies she and the father had left the girl in the care of older siblings, aged 13, 9 and 5 while the adults were outside the house, but the toddler had gotten out.
She said they’d been searching for the girl and had called 911 before girl’s mother said she’d called 911 before Collins found her.
The girl had insect bites and scratches but no serious injuries.
But that doesn’t mean she wasn’t upset.
“The baby started crying,” Collins told NBC “so I turned my phone on and let her listen to some gospel music, and she calmed right down.”
For Bryant, who told NBC he’d served 10 years in federal prison for meth manufacturing, saving the girl’s young life might have been symbolic of getting away from his old ways.
“”When I was in prison, I made a very conscientious effort to change, and I did,” he said.
The girl was released to the custody of her mother.
Check out the 11Alive report here.
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