‘This dude literally saved my son’s life’: Mom touts man who saved boy, 4, from errant hockey puck

A grateful mother was reunited with a man who saved her son after setting social media on a quest to track down the hero hockey fan.

“I don’t even want to think about what would have happened.”

(Video: WEWS)

Thursday, Asia Davis and her four-year-old son Nasir were in attendance at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse to watch the Laval Rocket take on the home team Cleveland Monsters. It was there that a stranger’s instincts would lead to fast friends dropping a ceremonial first puck only days after one had taken an errant course straight for the boy.

Video shared to social media played at regular speed and then in slow motion showed as a puck clipped the glass on its way into the stands where a man, later identified as 28-year-old Andrew Podolak, stepped in to shield the child during the third period.

“Tiktok do your thing!” posted Davis hoping to find the man as she contended, “This dude literally saved my son’s life. He prevented a life-changing event from happening.”

“He was like, ‘I was meant to be here.’ And he was. You cannot tell me God is not real,” the mother went on as she described how Podolak could have moved to an empty seat while her son was acting up, but he had remained, and she didn’t think about it until after the fact that she should have done more to express her gratitude.

“I don’t even want to think about what would have happened,” she told NBC News. “Best-case scenario, [Nasir] would have gone to the hospital.”

@asiafromakron Tiktok do your thing! @Cleveland Monsters @Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse #lakeeriemonsters #clevelandtok #216 #fyp #clevelandkids #foryoupage #greenscreen ♬ original sound – AsiaFromAkron

The close call was said to have left ice chips in her son’s hair and her effort to locate the quick-reacting Podolak proved successful as a follow-up video had Davis explain, “I posted that TikTok at 2 a.m. last night — 10 a.m. this morning I had a [direct message] from Andrew. It just said, ‘Everything happens for a reason. I’m glad little man was okay.'”

Davis wasn’t alone in wanting to send Podolak to another game as a thank you for what he did. As she went on to explain, the Monsters’ reached out to her in hopes of helping find the man and when they learned the mother already had, they extended a welcome to all three and treated them to a VIP experience.

“WE FOUND THEM! See you tonight!” posted the team with a screenshot of Davis’ initial video before sharing a montage of the original save, dropping the puck and getting to sit against the glass for another game against the Rocket. “it wasn’t lunch, but we did help with a pretty cool experience…we were happy to welcome Asia, Nasir and Andrew back to @RMFieldHouse after her TikTok went viral this morning!”

Davis went on to tell WEWS, “I was just coming out and trying to enjoy a hockey game, and the next thing you know everything’s blowing up on social media. This, then and the other, and a whole bunch of people contacting me–it’s truly a good feeling.”

At the time of this post, her original video had been seen more than 3.5 million times and in an interview with NBC News she continued to heap on her gratitude to the man and said, “You’re a really special person and I just hope that you never go a day in your life without knowing that.”

Podolak, who continued to earn praise online, replied, “Everything happens for a reason, right?”

Kevin Haggerty


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