WASHINGTON — A nine-year-old boy, armed only with swift thinking and a favorite gospel song, was able to escape a kidnapper and sing another day.
According to reports Willie Myrick was playing with his pet chihuahua outside his Atlanta home when a man grabbed him and forced him into a car.
“He was cursing at me telling me to shut up and didn’t want to hear a word from me,” Willie told ABC affiliate WSB-TV. “He said if I told anyone, he would hurt me, like in a bad way.”
But Willie, who just turned 10 this week, told police he started singing the song “Every Praise” over and over, until the man finally threw him onto the street and drove away.
“He opened the door and threw me out,” Myrick WXIA-TV in Atlanta. “He told me not to tell anyone.”
According to CBS Atlanta, there is a $10,000 reward for the capture of kidnapper, who is described as a black male in his mid- to late-20s. He is said to have been wearing khaki shorts and a white, short-sleeve shirt with a Nike logo at the time of the abduction.
Touched by Willie’s story, Hezekiah Walker, the songwriter behind “Every Praise,” flew to Atlanta this week to meet the young man. A church celebration, coinciding with Willie’s birthday, ensued. Walker told WSB-TV that he believes God spoke through him to “save that boy’s life.”
“You never know who you’re going to touch,” the gospel singer said.
See more from NBC affiliate WXIA-TV: