Garrett Dotson, the son of Storage Wars star Dan Dotson, was hurt in a drive-by shooting in Arizona, according to his family. The 22-year-old is expected to survive thanks to doctors who decided to quickly airlift him to Las Vegas, his mother, Laura Dotson, told the New York Daily News Monday. Dotson shared the news about his son's near-death experience on Twitter, asking fans for their prayers Sunday.
Garrett was with a date when he was struck by gunfire after 3 a.m. Sunday morning outside the AirBnB where he was staying in Lake Havasu, Arizona. Laura told the Daily News he called 911 himself and walked back into the building. He was taken to a nearby hospital, but doctors there realized he needed to be airlifted to a trauma center in Las Vegas. Garrett was bleeding internally and the bullet ruptured his vena cava, Laura said.
"The doctor hopped on the table and used his hands to hold everything together and massage my son’s heart. He straddled my son all the way to Las Vegas," Laura told the Daily News. The helicopter pilot needed permission to fly without a co-pilot because the helicopter would have been overweight because of the doctor. The Dotsons said the pilot also needed special permission to fly to Las Vegas because of President Donald Trump Sunday night rally in the area.
Dotson considers the doctor, Dr. Christopher Salvino, a hero for saving his son's life. "He was bloody from his elbows to his toe tips. He had his hands in Garrett’s chest, keeping him alive from his operating room in Havasu to the operating room in Las Vegas," Dotson told the Daily News. "A lot of people came together to save our son, and we’re just so happy. This could have been a much different outcome."
The Dotsons later rushed from their California home to visit Garrett at the UMC Trauma Center before his successful surgery. They could only stay for about 15 minutes due to coronavirus restrictions. On Monday, they could speak to Garrett over the phone because his breathing tube was removed.
Thank you to the surgeon that saved my son from bleeding out on the air trip to Vegas Thank you everyone for the prayers & positive thoughts thrown our way. Garrett is out of surgery & is expected to survive #prayerworks #prayerwarriors thank you God for sparing my son Garrett pic.twitter.com/fAb3KaAduK— Dan Dotson on A&E (@auctionguydan) September 13, 2020
Police are still investigating the shooting, and there have been no arrests, reports TMZ. Laura believes her son was targeted and told the Daily News witnesses heard someone shouting at him before the shooting. She vowed to help police in their investigation. "We have witnesses," she said. "We’re hoping they’ll be able to find the shooter. It’s an attempted murder."