Florida Detective and Wife Adopt Eight-Year-Old Boy After He Was Stabbed and Set on Fire by Father Who Killed His Mother and Sister

The Blair family | CREDIT: HCSO SHERIFF

A little boy is getting a second chance after enduring unimaginable heartbreak — all thanks to the detective who responded to the call on the night his world changed forever.

Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) Detective Mike Blair and his wife Danyel said they knew they had to take in Ronnie Oneal IV and give him a new life after his traumatic experience in 2018, according to a video from HCSO.

“He knows he has a story that has been written for him,” Blair, a father of five, said in the video. “But he also knows he doesn’t want to be defined by that story.”

According to the sheriff’s department, Ronnie was just 8 years old when his mother and 9-year-old sister were brutally murdered by his dad, Ronnie Oneal III.


That evening, HCSO Detective Mike Blair responded to the gruesome scene, where he discovered that little Ronnie had also been attacked, and was stabbed and lit on fire by his father. (Ronnie Oneal III was sentenced to three life terms plus 60 years in prison for the murders, per NBC affiliate WFLA.)

“We were told there was a child being medevacked to Tampa General, but he was not expected to live,” Blair recalled in the video.

During Ronnie’s stay in the hospital, Blair would often visit, bringing the boy gifts from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, with whom he has a connection, according to WFLA.

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SOURCE: PEOPLE, Joelle Goldstein