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“Someone hurt him:” Man found barely breathing, bleeding from head on tracks in Buckhead


By Zac Summers

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    ATLANTA, Georgia (WGCL) — Atlanta police are investigating after a man was found bleeding and barely alive on train tracks in Buckhead.

Colin Kelly said his heart sank when he got a call from police telling him his partner of 3 ½ years was clinging to life at Grady Hospital. Joshua Dowd, 28, was rushed to the hospital with a blunt force injury to his head.

“I’m in freefall,” Kelly said. “We don’t have a lot of information to go on.”

Dowd was found Sunday morning on train tracks near Piedmont and Lakeshore Drive. He was bleeding from his head and barely breathing. A 25-year-old man from Alabama made the discovery as he was walking in the area, according to a police report.

“I don’t know how he got there. It’s not an area he would typically be in,” Kelly said. “As far as I can tell, someone hit him with something very hard on his head.”

Kelly said Dowd, who is of Asian descent and openly gay, went out with friends in Midtown Saturday night. At some point, he separated from the group. Where and with whom he may have met up with is a mystery.

“I really hope we get answers because someone hurt him,” Kelly said. “He’s fighting very hard for his life right now, but someone hurt him and it’s very severe.”

“I’ve never actually experienced this type of heartbreak before,” said Brittany Rivera with tears in her eyes. “It’s been really rough, and I’ve been trying to be strong for everybody.”

Rivera has known Dowd for nearly a decade. She said she can’t imagine why anyone would want to hurt her best friend.

“The fact that someone could do this and take away such a precious piece of our life is not OK,” she said.

As Dowd remains in the hospital, with severe brain damage, his family, friends and partner are all praying for a miracle. They’ve also started a GoFundMe campaign to help cover Dowd’s medical expenses.

“Everything I know revolved around Josh,” Kelly said. “Everything I loved revolved around Josh. Everything reminds me of Josh. We’re still holding out hope.”

The man who called police told authorities there was no one else near the scene when he discovered Dowd, according to the report. The report also noted there was a homeless camp “not too far from where” Dowd was found on the tracks.

The incident is currently listed as “Miscellaneous Non-crime,” but an Atlanta police spokesperson said the case is still under investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call APD.

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