Meet Tyler Dodd: Boston Marathon Bombing Hero Is An Unemployed Afghan Veteran

on April 18 2013 10:38 AM

Tyler Dodd -- the same Tyler who was mentioned only by his first name by Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick at a news conference on Tuesday -- has identified himself as the Afghan veteran who helped an injured student at the Boston Marathon bombings on Monday.

TYLER DODD Tyler Dodd, an unemployed Afghan vet who helped an injured Boston Marathon victim, came forward on Tuesday after a televised plea from Gov. Deval Patrick.  Facebook

Patrick mentioned Dodd’s name in the televised conference as a favor to the injured woman, who was identified by the Daily Mail as 20-year-old Northeastern University student Victoria McGrath. Patrick said McGrath suffered “serious shrapnel wounds” and wanted to thank Dodd personally for his help.

"She was scared, she was carried we think by a firefighter, to the medical tent and [was] really -- she described it -- hysterical," Patrick said, when an Afghan vet whose last name she didn’t know came to her aid and managed to calm her down.  “His name is Tyler, that’s all we know.”

Dodd, who calmed McGrath by showing her his own scars from shrapnel wounds he received in Afghanistan, came forward after a friend saw Patrick’s message.

"Out of all the people that I was able to console and help, she stuck out in my mind more than anyone else for some reason. We had some kind of unspoken bond," Dodd, an unemployed oil rig worker who moved to Boston last year, told CNN's Piers Morgan. "I got her to look at me, first off. She looked me right in the eyes. And I asked her what her name was."

"I remember trying to be aware of my body language and not to look at her injuries as to make the situation worse for her," said Dodd. "I tried to keep as calm as I could and to keep her as calm. And I drew my strength from her strength."

In another interview with Fox News just hours after Patrick’s news conference, Dodd said he saw that McGrath clearly suffering and felt that calming her would be the least he could do.

“She was obviously in extreme pain. If there was nothing else I could do, I could talk to her,” Dodd said. “She asked me not to leave her. She was holding my hand. There was some kind of connection on a spiritual level, I would have to say, cause when I told it was going to be okay, she believed me.”

Although McGrath suffered serious injuries to her legs, her father told the Connecticut Post that she was recovering well after her first series of surgeries and would be able to keep her legs. "She's going to be okay," James McGrath said. "She's not going to have an amputation."

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