Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Former Shepparton man recognised for bravery

Damian Hall has been awarded a bravery medal after saving a baby from a pit bull attack.

SOPHIE MALCOLM December 18, 2012 4:35am

Damian Hall with his son Thomas, 2.

Damian Hall is reluctant to be labelled a hero.

The Shepparton-born man was awarded a Royal Humane Society of Australasia medal for bravery on Friday, but says during the incident he just did what he had to do.

Mr Hall, who lives in Melbourne, was driving along a road in the suburb of Burnside on November 17 last year when he saw a woman trying to fight off a pit bull dog attacking a baby in a pram.

‘‘I was driving past and saw people looking at something in the street ... I saw a dog in the pram and a lady screaming and I thought it wasn’t right,’’ Mr Hall said.

‘‘I pulled a U-turn and went back and did what I could to get the dog off the baby. I managed to get the dog off and distracted long enough that I could get the baby out of the pram.’’

Mr Hall said he then handed the baby to another man as the dog set upon himself and three other people.

‘‘I just had to grab it by its throat with my hands, nothing else was working,’’ he said.

Mr Hall said he still kept in touch with the toddler and his family.

‘‘I try not to give it much thought, because my son was about the same age,’’ he said.

Royal Humane Society of Australasia secretary Sue Cutler said Mr Hall was awarded a bronze medal at Government House for his efforts.

Ms Cutler said the medals were awarded annually in each state for several different acts of bravery.

‘‘I think they’re exceedingly worthy of their awards, what they do is a very selfless act,’’ she said.

‘‘Often they act in a split second, too, without any hesitation ... it’s the fact they can act so quickly ... which I think is also amazing.’’

Mr Hall said he was not one of those people that does things and seeks out praise.

‘‘The real heroes are in Afghanistan and Iraq, I reckon,’’ he said.

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