It is now 11:45 pm, ET as I begin this post on 11/16/13. It will no longer be 11/16 when I finish and publish it. I am taking this precious time to pay SPECIAL attention to this very significant day…November 16th…
This was a very difficult day for me. 11/16 of 2013. My husband and I had set my booth up out at the Flea Market here in St. Augustine, FL. A booth I had rented to sell “TEAM USA” t-shirts in association with my website: numberoneteam.net. Chris left at about 10:00 am to go to work. Shortly after he left there was a loud crash/explosion-type sound heard coming from the direction of where Interstate 95 north and south-bound lanes pass the Flea market. OMG!!! Horrible accident!!! One vehicle, a car on south-bound side, right next to median…thick metal rail separating North from South-bound traffic!!!
No questions…I ran out of our covered pavilion onto the grass, through mud and up to a fence prohibiting my access to the highway. One man quickly climbed up and over the flimsy fence with two rows of barbed-wire at the top. I could NOT, however, make it up and over this obstacle course! Others came to assist me as I screamed that I work in the medical field. One lady apologized twice, at least, for putting her arms/hands in inappropriate places to stabilize my climb up and over this fence! Finally…I WAS OVER!!! I went straight to the car and observed two conscious victims…a young couple. The male driver was injured badly. The female passenger had no visible injuries, however was in TOTAL shock. The metal median rail had completely penetrated the inside of the car from driver side over to the passenger side, taking a good chunk of the driver’s right leg with it. Sorry for the visuals, but it was bad, folks. Both were responding verbally. We could do nothing for either of them due to the metal median rail pinning them both in the car. Authorities arrived and began clearing the immediate area to allow room for EMS arrival.
Whew!!! Both victims alive and conscious. Thus began my trip back… “to the other side”…of that horrible, flimsy fence!!! Many folks were on that other side, ready and eager to help me climb back up and over that flimsy fence with two rows of barbed-wire at the top!!! And what did I hear? That SAME lady apologizing…”AGAIN”…for the inappropriate placement of her arms/hands to stabilize my climb and descent, up, over, and back down that flimsy fence…with 2 rows of barbed-wire at the top!!! I kid you not, folks! I could not make this stuff up!!! Nuts? OF course!!! This is MY life!!! MY WORLD!!! you know… that world I try to “welcome” everybody into??? “WELCOME TO MY WORLD, FOLKS!!!”
Life-Flight soon arrived and began circling overhead to identify a spot to land, which ended up being right on I-95 south-bound lane, just North of the accident. This immediately reminded me of my accident, although I do not remember the helicopter ambulance ride at all. Jaws-of-life quickly cut through and removed the metal rail, thereby freeing both victims. This gave me my 2nd “return to my accident” as Jaws-of-life was also required to safely extract me from my vehicle.
Sitting back at my booth, I began sending posts on Facebook about the events…After awhile, I remember thinking to myself…”Hhhmmm, my accident was in…NOVEMBER…as well” and I quickly took this one step further as I screamed out loud…”What is today’s date???” Folks quickly tried to come up with the date…”THE 16th”…I suddenly exhaled every last bit of breath I had in me as this realization hit me FULL FORCE!!! November 16th…EXACTLY 27 years to-the-day…since my car accident during which both The Jaws-of-life AND Lifeflight helicopter ambulance had been utilized for MY rescue, as well!!! This hit me hard. I was suddenly back re-living my nightmare from 27 years ago…to the day! Nov. 16, 1986. MY LIFE WOULD NEVER, EVER, BE THE SAME…
My heart aches for this young couple. She was transported via vehicular ambulance. He went via helicopter ambulance. I sat out at that flea market in “my spot” the entire time. In my own little world. 27 years seems like such a very, very long time ago, however that dreadful day came right back to hit me in the face…EXACTLY 27 years later…TO THE DAY… and do you know what? That horrible day, 27 years ago, sometimes seems like only “yesterday”. Now…can you all feel my emotion as I ask, yet again…was this simply a coincidence…OR… something else???
I will say many, many prayers for this young couple whose lives have been forever changed, all by a fleeting moment in time. Rumors run rampant after such horrible accidents as this. One such rumor from today? Perhaps there had been a third victim in the back seat of that car…??? I remain uncertain at this time…AMEN.