If it was a pump action one it was probably a Daisy 25. I guarantee that would hurt. When I was a kid my best friend had one and I had a lesser Daisy.
We used to have air rifle wars in which we would basically play cowboys and Indians with our air rifles. I was at a severe disadvantage and remember even at 25 yards or so, that model 25 would really hurt.
One thing that we were fairly smart about is we would wear our swim goggles to protect our eyes.
You and I have had similar experiences. Those BB guns sting! Paintball made the BB gun wars obsolete.
One afternoon we brought in a Cottontail Rabbit we killed with them. A BB in the right spot can be deadly.
Then we graduated to C02 powered 22. cal. pellet guns. Those were effective on small game. Rabbits, birds, squirrels.
I used my father's break-over 1.77 cal. pellet rifle this year to take care a bunch of birds that were destroying his grape crop. Found that a direct hit on the side of the bird only knocked the feathers out. But if you shot for the head, almost any shot was fatal.
Ah, I remember using daisy pellet rifles during my days in JROTC. It could even punch through skin, and could be lethal enough if it could penetrate slightly into the neck. There are also elctric automatic air guns that are powerful, painful even not lethal. BB guns these days are much more powerful than toy guns we have seen in the past.