Photo: George Burns/Harpo Studios
After another vicious beating from his father, Tyler says he blacked out for three days. "He played these mind games with me," Tyler says. "This one in particular, he wanted me to change a tire." As Tyler worked to loosen the bolts, he says his father screamed and cursed at him. Even Tyler's mother and uncle tried to help him...but they couldn't prevent the inevitable.
"[My father] couldn't get the bolts off [either] because they were rusted," Tyler says. "He looked up at me, and there was a smirk on my face. All I remember is him tackling me, and I remember holding onto a chain-link fence so tight, my hands are bloody and he's hitting me."
Watch Tyler describe the horrific incident.
Every day, Tyler says he lived in fear that something would set his father off. It got so bad, young Tyler took drastic measures. One day, he says he slit his wrists and tried to commit suicide.
"I thought, 'What is the point of living?'" he says. "My mother was truly my saving grace, because she would take me to church with her. I would see my mother smiling in the choir, and I wanted to know this God that made her so happy. If I had not had that faith in my life, I don't know where I would be right now."