NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — It seems with tragedy, a moment in time emerges that comes to represent the gravity of what happened. The Christmas Day Bombing in downtown Nashville is certainly no different.
It was an encounter between a man out walking his dog and a Metro Nashville police officer clearing the area that showed us all how lucky we were no innocent lives were lost. That moment changed their lives.
That man out walking his dog DJ was David Malloy. “What can you say, except it wasn’t my turn to go. I mean, just wasn’t time,” recalled Malloy.
If there were ever two people that can tell you both their lives changed forever the moment they met, it would be Officer Tyler Luellen and Malloy.
Malloy was less than a block away from the RV that exploded as Officer Luellen was warning him to evacuate. It may have just saved his life.
The world watched that terrifying moment. It’s never far from Malloy’s mind as his eyes were fixed on that RV the moment the blast went off. To this day, with all the loud construction in the city, the bombing is constantly on his mind.
“We’re reminded of it every day, because of the construction and I still have PTSD. So when the crews, if they dropped something heavier, or something like that, it kind of hits me, you know, and it’s not as bad they say, it’ll go away over a period of time,” said Malloy.
One thing that won’t go away over time is the unlikely friendship formed between the two: a young Metro police officer who will forever be known as one of the “Nashville 6” and a wildly successful music industry veteran, with yet another new identity.
“I’ve gone from being The David Malloy to Kathy Anderson’s husband, interior designer, to be THE MAN WITH THE DOG. That’s my evolution and then my friends say, you know, ironically, sadly, you’re probably most remembered as the man with a dog, you know.”
Yes, the moment they met their lives changed forever, and maybe, just maybe, they might both say for the better.
“Well, you know, he’s a terrific guy. He really is and he doesn’t have any family here. We’ve had a couple breakfasts together and actually, he kind of checks on me to see if I’m okay, so I said to him, I know you don’t have Thanksgiving, come spend Thanksgiving with us.”
And give thanks, they did.
News 2 takes you inside the recovery of Nashville’s Historic Downtown area rocked by the bombing last Christmas. Catch special reports on 2nd Avenue Reborn all day Thursday in every newscast. And on WKRN.com.
Malloy said everyone asks him how DJ, his dog, is doing. She is terrific with no long-term effects from that morning.