Retired Firefighter Saves Boy from Pit Bull Attack

| by Phyllis M Daugherty

Paul Gedgaudas, a Brockton, Massachusetts, retired firefighter, saved a 13-year old boy from a Pit Bull attack on Wednesday afternoon. Gedgaudas himself was injured when the dog turned and sunk its teeth into his wrist.

"I heard the cars honking at first, and then I heard the screams," said Gedgaudas. "I'm figuring maybe there was a fight going on from the kids getting out of school."

But, then he saw a Pit Bull dragging a child down the street by his ankle and the dog was not letting go. “He dragged him from my fence to the driveway,” said Gedgaudas.

The veteran firefighter said he acted instinctually and put on a pair of leather work gloves as he ran down his driveway, where he grabbed the Pit Bull by the collar to yank him away from the boy. The dog then whipped around and sank its teeth into Gedgaudas' wrist.

According to, the dog had already dragged the boy about 15 feet down the sidewalk.

Gedgaudas did not let go and gradually the dog settled down before firefighters arrived a few minutes later. "He had a leash on; I grabbed it. He had one of the steel choke chains. I was able to grab that.” But, that is when the dog turned and bit him in the wrist, he said.

The 13-year-old boy was sitting in his mother’s car by that time and was visibly shaken.

The boy explained that the Pit Bull that attacked was his own pet and that he took the dog on routine walks but it had “acted out uncharacteristically” that day, Capt. Robert Wyman reported.

 “He is a genuinely polite and courteous young man,” Gedgaudas said.

The following day Gedgaudas learned that his wrist was not broken but he still needed to keep it bandaged in order to protect the puncture wounds, WHDH reported.

The boy’s injuries were minor, and he was not held at the hospital.

Capt. Wyman wrote a letter to Fire Chief Richard Francis regarding Gedgaudas’ actions and said this “reinforces the sentiment that a fireman is never off duty and that his call to act in the face of danger doesn’t end at retirement.”

Chief Francis said Gedgaudas retired in 2011 with 22 years of service after injuring his back on the job.

“He has always been one of these guys that, if he came upon something, he acted without regard for his own self, ” the Chief added.

Both Gedgaudas and the boy are expected to fully recover.

The Pit Bull was impounded by Brockton Animal Control and will be held in quarantine for 10 days in accordance with State law.

Sources: WHDH, Wicked Local, WCVB