Good will come of this
“There were so many good things that came of a terrible thing that happened.
“We were going to dinner. It was a little bit later at night in February, about 7:45, so it was dark. As we went over the railroad tracks near the rest home, I saw a dog on the other side of the road. I just glanced at it wondering why a dog was there, and when I looked back there was a guy standing right in front of me. I slammed on the brakes and tried to miss him, and barely clipped him with the front side of my truck. He was about 90 years old. I got out and I could tell there wasn’t much to do. We were pretty lucky there were a lot of people around—the road was busy, an off-duty cop was right behind us and started immediately doing chest compressions. The police were there in a heartbeat.
“My wife didn’t see anything. I remember her saying, ‘What happened?’ I was trying to keep her calm… and trying to keep my little boy from seeing.
“My wife had a friend she called, and she and my son sat in the friend’s car. She was the first person my wife thought of, and we found out the friend’s brother had hit a guy when she was younger. There’s no doubt in my mind that she was the person who was supposed to come. She talked to my wife and kept her calm and my son distracted.
“A grief counselor that came set up a meeting with the son of the man that had been killed. I was impressed with how understanding the son was. He had been a firefighter. He said, ‘I’ve seen this kind of stuff happen,’ and was really empathetic. That meeting was really necessary for me.
“The day after the accident, a neighborhood friend came over and I remember thinking, ‘I don’t want to talk to anybody.’ She hit and killed somebody when she was younger. I thought about how cool it was that she didn’t let it take over her life. She told me what her father always said, that ‘good will come of this.’ When she got in her accident she didn’t know if that was true. But she’s gotten through it and has been able to help other people who've been through similar things.
“That next little while was tough to get through. But I always think how much harder it would have been if I didn’t have that support.”