This is the photo of himself James Hetfield sent to Dee Gallant after contacting her about Metallica’s music saving her from a volatile situation with a cougar. (Photo submitted)

This is the photo of himself James Hetfield sent to Dee Gallant after contacting her about Metallica’s music saving her from a volatile situation with a cougar. (Photo submitted)

Metallica lead singer glad to be a life-saver for B.C. woman

Heavy metal song that scares away cougar drawing world-wide attention

Word travels fast in today’s world.

The story about the Chemainus woman who cranked up a Metallica tune on her phone to scare away a cougar recently while on a walk with her dog on a logging road south of Duncan has been picked up by news agencies and specialty websites and channels around the world.

CNN. Fox News. Global. Billboard. They’ve all been in contact with Dee Gallant as well as countless others on an ongoing basis since the story broke after she posted a video on her Facebook page showing her standoff with a cougar. A quick flip through her iTunes to the loud hit ‘Don’t Tread Of Me’ and the big cat went scurrying away.

You just knew Metallica was going to hear about the incident.

“The artist liaison messaged me and asked if she could give my contact information to the band,” said Gallant.

That was early Friday and by the afternoon Metallica lead singer James Hetfield, who just happened to be on the eve of his 56th birthday celebration the next day, was on the phone to Gallant.

“Like he needed an introduction,” chuckled Gallant. “I said, ‘how do I know it’s really you?’”

Hetfield texted a photo of himself after the call just to eliminate the doubt.

Gallant said they had a pleasant conversation for a few minutes, talking about the Cowichan Valley, dogs and, of course, the story that’s garnered world-wide attention and connected the two of them.

“He said he saw on one post you wanted to know we saved your life so I’m calling to let you know we’re glad we saved your life,” Gallant related of Hetfield’s remarks.

Everything about this experience has been surreal for Gallant. Receiving the call from Hetfield was the icing on the cake.

“I was hoping, definitely,” said Gallant about hearing from him.

“I was super excited. It’s so amazing he reached out like that.”

Gallant’s friends are all expecting she’ll hear from Ellen DeGeneres or Jimmy Kimmel for some television appearances as the logical next step in the saga.

More than two weeks since this all started, the calls keep coming day and night at work and at home.

“My boss has been pretty understanding,” Gallant praised.

She’s continually surprised how this story has captured the imagination of so many people and garnered such interest.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Signage on a South Surrey sidewalk reminds pedestrians to respect social-distancing guidelines. (Photo: Tracy Holmes)
Surrey records 4,400 COVID-19 cases in March

New cases almost doubled between February, March

Surrey RCMP are looking for these two men after a bank in the 12800-block of 96th Avenue was robbed on March 12. (Images: Surrey RCMP)
Police release images of two men suspected of robbing Surrey bank

Robbery happened on March 12 at bank in 12800-block of 96th Avenue

An example of a Surrey Police cruiser, showcased at Mayor Doug McCallum’s State of the City Address at Civic Hotel in May of 2019. (File photo: Amy Reid)
Recently hired inspector no longer ‘taking a position’ with Surrey Police Service

Jeff Harris was first announced as an inspector on April 1

A vaccine-filled needle awaits injection, during a COVID-19 vaccination clinic held Jan. 15, 2021 at Amica White Rock. Community Living B.C.-funded workers learned April 8 that they, too, can now be vaccinated. (Tracy Holmes file photo)
Support workers for those with disabilities given vaccine priority

News shared with Community Living B.C.-funded staff on April 8

President of the West Coast Fine Arts Show, Brian Croft, said pandemic restrictions necessitated a shift to an entirely online event this year, running until April 30. (File photo)
The West Fine Art Show shifts to an online-only event amid tighter health orders

Website version retains the flavour of the annual live exhibition

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
1,262 more COVID-19 infections in B.C. Friday, 9,574 active cases

Province’s mass vaccination reaches one million people

University of Victoria rowing coach Barney Williams at the University of Victoria in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
UVic, women’s rowing coach deny former athlete’s allegation of verbal abuse

Lily Copeland alleges coach Barney Williams would stand close to her and speak aggressively in the sauna

Buckingham Palace officials say Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth II, has died. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Alastair Grant
Flags drop, bells toll as Canadians remember special relationship with Prince Philip

‘He was often portrayed as a brisk or brusque, rough character… but it’s that other side of him, the caring individual who spent time with people and asked questions and showed compassion’

Librarian Katie Burns with the Fraser Valley Regional Libraries poses for a photo in Chilliwack on June 18, 2019. Monday, April 12, 2021 is Library Workers’ Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of April 11 to 17

Library Workers Day, That Sucks! Day, and Wear Your Pyjamas to Work Day are all coming up this week

Robinson Russ, 37, was fatally stabbed on April 4, according to a statement from police. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police name victim following city’s fourth homicide of 2021

Robinson Russ, 37, was fatally stabbed Sunday in the Downtown Eastside

Sunset Manor, an assisted living facility in Chilliwack owned by the Netherlands Reformed Congregation of Chilliwack, pictured here in October 2020, had its third COVID-19 outbreak declared on April 9, 2021. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress file)
3rd COVID outbreak at care home run by Chilliwack church known for opposing vaccinations

30-bed Sunset Manor owned and operated by Netherlands Reformed Congregation of Chilliwack

A man wears a face mask past the emergency department of the Vancouver General Hospital. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
Calls for stricter action in B.C. as COVID-19 variants projected to climb

Jens von Bergmann says the province has taken a ‘wait and see’ approach when early action is needed

Vancouver’s park board general manager issued a new order Friday restricting tents and other temporary structures from being set up in Strathcona Park after April 30, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver park board issues order to restrict tents in Strathcona Park

The order issued Friday restricted tents and other temporary structures from being set up after April 30

Most Read