ANDERSON, S.C. (WSPA) – A grandfather of four, Ralph Duroy, laughs a lot.
One of the things that brings out his smile is his 1988 Nissan truck. It was handed down to him by his stepfather.
“Just before he died in 2000, he passed it on to me. It has sentimental value,” he said.
On Tuesday, that family truck was almost stolen. His wife noticed a man moving around the garage near their home.
“She said someone is trying to steal your truck,” said Duroy.
Deputies say that suspect was 25-year-old Rusty Seawright. According to the incident report, Seawright grabbed firewood and a piece of concrete to break open the steering column on the truck.
Seawright was able to successfully hot-wire the vehicle and start pulling out of the driveway.
“He was frantic when he saw me coming,” said Duroy.
That’s because the 70-year-old didn’t come alone. He also brought his revolver.
“I stopped about 20 feet away and drew down on him.” Duroy said Seawright immediately gave up and dropped to his knees.
“He was almost hyperventilating,” he said.
That’s when the blue-eyed grandpa’s fear turned to compassion.
While waiting for law enforcement to arrive — he says, “we had an opportunity to talk to him about the direction his life was going.”
His wife also brought Seawright water.
“We got along very well actually, considering,” said Duroy as he laughed.
According to the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office, Seawright crashed his own vehicle and took off from the scene before attempting to steal the truck.
He’s been charged with driving too fast for conditions, failing to report striking fixtures on highway, and two counts of petty larceny.
Duroy says it will cost about $700 to repair his truck.