Ohio bus driver Rickey Wagoner's life was 'miraculously' spared during a violent altercation on Monday morning when two bullets were stopped from piercing his chest.
The seemingly random attack occurred after Wagoner got out of his bus to investigate a malfunction which caused it to unexpectedly stop. According to his police statement, three suspects approached Wagoner while he tried to repair the vehicle, and when he turned around, one of them fired two shots at his chest. When he tried to wrestle the weapon away from the shooter, another round was shot into his leg, reports Dayton Daily News.
After the suspects fled in a 1990s model Ford, Wagoner called 911 at 5:20 a.m. for help, saying, "I've been hit in the leg. My chest feels like I've been hit with a sledgehammer."
The reason for Wagoner's miraculous survival despite the direct hits to the chest was the Bible in his chest pocket. Sgt. Michael Pauley of the Dayton Police Department said to WHIO, "The two bullets were stopped by the New Testament book in his chest pocket." He continued, "There was obviously some kind of intervention involved in this incident, because he probably should not be here."
Friends and family members were inclined to agree that someone was watching over Wagoner. His friend of 20 years, Lillie Brown, said in an interview, "God is on Rick's side."
2 News said that "it was nothing short of a miracle" that Wagoner survived the attack.
Wagoner told police that he believed the shooting may have been related to a gang initiation. He is recovering at Miami Valley Hospital, but Sgt. Pauley said that his injuries are not "life-threatening."