It was a rare and thrilling moment for a man who's been through so much. Standing on the pitcher's mound at the Ball Park in Arlington in front of thousands of spectators, it was an opportunity Deputy James Boyd of the Montague County Sheriff's Department will never forget.
"Overwhelmed… but excited" said Boyd.
Boyd was given a once in a lifetime chance to throw the first pitch at the Texas Rangers vs. Baltimore Orioles game Friday night through the organization Police Officer's Angels.
"It's a new and upcoming organization that's there to help fallen law enforcement or officers that were seriously injured on the job. They contacted my sheriff, Sheriff Cunningham and he requested me to do this" he said.
Back in March, Boyd was shot 3 times; twice in the chest and a bullet grazed his forehead during a routine traffic stop where he pulled over convicted felon Evan Ebel from Colorado. Back then, Ebel was wanted in the slaying of Colorado's prison chief. Despite his injuries, Boyd survived thanks to the bullet-proof vest he was wearing. After going through extensive rehabilitation, he returned to the line of duty just last month.
When asked about his transition back into work, Boyd replied "the last months been good. Finally getting back to a somewhat normal routine and getting back into the swing of things. It's been great."
Boyd knows the same risks still exist when stepping into his patrol car, but he says his commitment to protecting and serving his community remains un-wavered.
"I have planned on protecting Montague County and of course, Texas. I am going to stay within the job. That's what I do that's what I enjoy. Those plans have never changed" he said.
Boyd's main focus during the game was to somehow get the ball over home plate. This was the first time he stepped foot into the Ball Park since 2008 and was supported by friends and family during his pitch.
Boyd also has a background in baseball having played right field and is a big fan of the Rangers.