Lifestyle & Belief

Hitchhiker writing 'Kindness' memoir shot by motorist


A boy waves an American flag from a car window in Fairfield, Connecticut.


Spencer Platt

People always warn about the dangers of hitchhiking, but one hitchhiker was unlucky enough to get caught in a random drive-by shooting while in Montana.

According to the Associated Press, Ray Dolin, the unfortunate hitchhiker, was planning to travel cross-country while writing a memoir titled "The Kindness of America." Suffice to say, his welcome in northeastern Montana was less than kind when a man in a pickup truck shot him in the arm.

Dolin, 39, approached the pickup truck thinking that the driver was offering him a ride, said Valley County Sheriff Glen Meier.

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"He was preparing to eat his meal when the truck pulled in and he thought ‘Hey, here’s a ride’ and jumped up to walk over to the driver," Meier told MSNBC. "When he got closer he saw the gun and as he was starting to walk back, the guy pulled the trigger."

Dolin, a West Virginia native, was struck in the upper arm, and was taken to a hospital in Glasgow for treatment of his non-life-threatening injury, MSNBC reported.

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The AP and the Billings Gazette named the suspect who was arrested as Lloyd Christopher Danielson III, while MSNBC and UPI named him as Charles Lloyd Danielson III, but all agreed that he was 52 years old, and from Washington.

Dolin's father, Melvin Dolin, told the Billings Gazette, "He was going to make up his mind as he traveled along. But he didn't get that far."

"We're still the wonderful people in Montana we've always been, and we'll get through this," said Meier. Hopefully, that'll be enough to change the mind of Dolin when he finishes his memoir.