HAMILTON COUNTY, TN. (WRCB) -- As Brennan Nowell, 2, was taken into surgery Thursday night, his family's friends and neighbors hoped for the best.
However, their prayers were not answered. The toddler died from his injury before midnight Thursday.
Investigators tell Channel 3 he was playing with his grandfather's handgun, when it went off and shot the toddler in the stomach.
Since 2009, Chattanooga police say there have been five accidental injuries involving a gun and a child.
"I teach all of my students, when you own a firearm you have that responsibility of what that firearm does or doesn't do. If it falls in the wrong hands you will be charged, and should be charged," Instructor Joe Kochis says.
Kochis has worked as a gun instructor since the early 60s.
He says accidents like this can always be prevented.
"One of the most important things is you have to secure it so an unauthorized person will not have access, like a child," says Kochis.
It's not clear how the toddler got a hold of the .40 caliber handgun.
Investigators will not release anything more until the investigation is complete.