February 24th, 1980
1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NIV)
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
Giving thanks today to God for so many things, but today marks a unique anniversary.
It was 44 years ago on this date, February 24th, 1980, while sitting at a red light at 1AM that I was t-boned by a drunk driver clocked at 110 miles per hour. A policeman buddy, someone that I worked out with at the local YMCA, happened to be on duty and saw it coming. My car was demolished-top to bottom, side to side. It took firefighters 2.5 hours to cut me out of the wreckage all the while laying in broken glass, my back fractured in three places.
I thank God for the one Fire Fighter who held my hand and talked me through the noise and debris-never letting go. Even now I can hear the sound. I can see his arm reaching through the broken window. I can hear his reassuring voice that they would get me out...to stay calm as the jaws of life ripped the roof of my car away from my face. During the chaos another arrived on the scene. Just a "someone" with a plaid, flannel shirt to keep me covered as the metal shards flew around my face. I never found out who that person was, but I kept the shirt for many years later. There was something about it that I couldn't let go of-a symbol of compassion, mercy and survival.
That's how our God is-He provides that kind of love and care, never ever letting us go despite what we're going through.
I originally composed this note of gratitude in 2015 and thanked God for our son's decision to pursue Fire Fighting as his career choice. Today, I am proud to say our son not only achieved his dream becoming a professional Fire Fighter, but as well was chosen by his department to become a Paramedic. He worked hard, harder than most of us can fathom. The physical training Fire Fighters endure is amazing but compassion is something that comes from the heart. The choice to become a Paramedic is no easy decision, it isn't for the weak. They are the first on the scene of an accident. They treat those who are in a medical emergency. They are the ones who see trauma day after day. Nonetheless, this son of ours pursued and to date has come alongside many, just like me in their time of need.
My son is my hero. Thank you Andy for becoming a Fire Fighter and Paramedic. You make your momma proud.