Friday, May 24, 2024


On April 18, 2009, 4-year-old Hunter Hayes was playing in his yard in the Legends Ranch subdivision of South Montgomery County. A woman driving an Audi cut the corner to sharp at the corner of Legends Ranch and Legends Mist striking Hunter. The crash pulled him under the vehicle wrapping him around the axle. The exhaust pipe pierced his shoulder and thankfully the intense heat closed some of his blood vessels stopping some of the bleeding.

Hunters father, a Houston Fire Fighter saw the crash and pulled his son out from under the vehicle once he was able to get the driver to back up. At first Hunter was not responsive but his father was able to revive him.

Hunter was transported to Texas Children’s Hospital where he spent his fifth birthday in intensive care just five days later.

After several weeks he was released to go home but had to take part in physical therapy for his shoulder, His first visit to physical therapy was not pleasant and Hunter did not want to return.

Audrey Hayes, Hunters mother was a member of Pound 4 Pound gym in Spring where owner Antonio Flores taught boxing, kick-boxing and was a personal trainer. Audrey voiced her concern to Flores who told her to bring her young son in. Having children of his own Flores worked with Hunter for just a few minutes before Hunter opened up to him. Flores started to teach Hunter boxing moves. Hunter not aware he was actually getting the movement needed for his shoulder to heal. This continued for many sessions bringing Hunter back to the young energetic boy he was prior to the crash.

Shara Cote who lived in the subdivision heard of the incident but also learned that Hunter, who visited the fire Station many times with his dad, actually wanted to be a police officer. Cote visited with Sheriff Tommy Gage and Captain Rand Henderson and the three came up with a plan to make Hunter a deputy for the day.

It was arranged for Hunter to eat lunch near their subdivision, As he and Deputy Kim Christensen ate lunch, Tonja Bryant, a neighbor of the Hayes family came running in dressed as a bag lady. Telling the deputy that she had been at McDonalds and someone stole her bag of Happy Meals and candy bars which also contained some special chocolate. She told the deputy that the suspects were in the park in Legends Ranch.

Deputy Christensen and Hunter rushed to the patrol car, with lights and siren they responded to the park. There they located the two thieves, Troy Reynolds, a Splendora ISD Administrator , who Hunter dubbed the Hamburglar and Denise Sanders, both friends of the family were located.

Both were taken into custody. With Christensen escorting Bryant and Hunter escorting the cuffed Reynolds to the patrol car. They then whet to the Spring Creek Annex for a mock trial. Hunter watched intently as the judge sentenced the pair to a year in the county jail.

Afterwards Montgomery County Captain Rand Henderson presented Hunter with two awards from the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office for his bravery. A uniform cake was then served.

Hunter still had his eyes on the sack of candy bars taken from the thieves. The judge had ordered the evidence destroyed. Hunter dumped the sack of candy bars as he and his friends split up the evidence.


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