How Gospel Singing May Have Saved Kidnapped Boy

Willie Myrick spent hours after abduction in song

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 24, 2014 12:58 PM CDT

(Newser) – After Willie Myrick, then 9, was taken from his home in Atlanta, the kidnapper drove for several hours, police say—and all the while, Willie sang. The song was "Every Praise," a gospel tune recorded by Hezekiah Walker. "He was cursing at me, telling me to shut up, and didn't want to hear a word from me," Willie tells WSB-TV. “He said if I told anyone, he would hurt me, like in a bad way."

But after three hours of song, the man let him go: "He opened the door and threw me out," Willie says, via WXIA. The story made its way to Walker himself, who traveled down from New York City to meet Willie. "I just wanted to hug him and tell him I love him," Walker says. That hug came at a local church, amid a standing ovation and tears from Willie. Everyone sang "Every Praise" together. The kidnapper remains at large, and police have offered a $10,000 reward, notes BuzzFeed.

In an April 10, 2014, image provided by WXIA-TV, Willie Myrick is embraced by Grammy Award-winning gospel singer Hezekiah Walker in front of the congregation at Mt. Carmel Baptist Church in Atlanta.   (AP Photo/WXIA-TV)
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