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Watch: Gay Asian American Man Found Critically Injured, Lying on Train Tracks in Atlanta

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Monday July 19, 2021

Joshua Dowd
Joshua Dowd  (Source:GoFundMe)

A gay Asian American man in Atlanta, Georgia, was found on train tracks with severe head injuries his partner said have left him "fighting for his life," local newspaper the The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

The article indicates that, according to a police report, "Joshua Dowd, 28, of Atlanta was found unconscious, barely breathing and bleeding from the head the morning of July 11."

The young man, who remains hospitalized and in a coma, is reported to be a licensed massage therapist.

Local news channel CBS 46 reported that while police are not yet saying that Dowd was attacked, his partner and family believe he was the victim of an assault.

Dowd's partner, Colin Kelly, told the media that the area where Dowd was found by a passerby was "not an area he would typically be in."

Kelly told another local news channel, WSB-2, that one of Dowd's doctors "said it was a blunt force object" that caused Dowd's head injury. "Very, very hard impact. It was enough to crack his skull and it required a portion of his skull to be cut out to allow the brain to swell."

CBS 46 described Dowd as having "severe brain damage."

"Kelly said Dowd, who is of Asian descent and openly gay, went out with friends in Midtown Saturday night," CBS 46 detailed. "At some point, he separated from the group. Where and with whom he may have met up with is a mystery."

Kelly said that the investigation now includes looking for security video footage that could show more of what happened.

"Everything I know revolved around Josh," Kelly told CBS 46. "Everything I loved revolved around Josh. Everything reminds me of Josh. We're still holding out hope."

Whatever the motive might have been for an attack, it wasn't robbery, Kelly told WSB 2, noting, "He still had his phone and debit card on him." Kelly added that Dowd would sometimes "change his appearance so he wouldn't be at risk of getting attacked" in a bias crime.

A GoFundMe page has been established to help with Dowd's medical expenses. The page states that the young man was "brutally assaulted" and "left for dead." The goal of the page's fundraising is $100,000.

"He's fighting very hard for his life right now," Kelly told the media, adding that "someone hurt him and it's very severe."

To watch the CBS 46 news clip, follow this link.

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.