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Prayers, hugs & tears

January 20, 2014
By MIKE MATHISON - Sports editor (mmathison@heraldstaronline.com) , The Herald-Star

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding." - Proverbs 3:5

It doesn't matter the color of your jacket, skin or what community you live in, we must all pray for families of the three teenagers who attended Oak Glen High School who lost their lives in a terrible accident Saturday night.

We are all members of the community.

Tears are tears.

Heartache is heartache.

Sorrow is sorrow.

Hugs and prayers are essential.

Three 16-year-olds will not be sitting at their desks Tuesday when school resumes.

Not only is it real now, it will be real again when students go back to class Tuesday.

But, not only pray for the family and friends of the three, also please pray for the firemen who were on the truck when it collided with the car.

I can't imagine.

"Let my prayer come before thee: incline thine ear unto my cry." - Psalm 88:2

Prayers are a must because the lives of all involved will never be the same.

Never.

There is a new normal for all.

A painful new normal.

"Please understand that we are not guaranteed tomorrow," said Cookie West on the night of the candlelight vigil for her son Lee two years ago.

Our lives are but a vapor.

"Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes." - James 4:14

We are not guaranteed tomorrow.

And, that is a hard truth we all forget.

All of us.

There are a few phone calls parents never want to get and this one is right there - a car accident.

Teenagers, please understand, all of our questions about where you are going and who's going and when you'll be back are not just so we can know every detail of our lives.

As much as we really want to know every detail of your lives and as much as you roll your eyes at us when we ask those questions, we worry about you.

We understand that being extremely mindful and careful of everything you do, doesn't always mean everything.

Accidents happen.

Do not take life for granted.

We want that phone call if you will be late, even if it's five minutes.

We want you to understand that life can change at any moment.

And, unfortunately, it did here.

This is not an Oak Glen thing.

This is a community thing.

This is a prayer thing.

This is a "what can I do for you" thing.

This could have been any of our children.

This is when we hold these students and their families up to God and ask him for patience, kindness, grace and healing.

We praise God through the good and bad, as hard as that seems in times like this.

We will never know "why?"

I do know, though, that life goes on and we all need to help each other, with God's help, to get through times like this.

School will be in session, homework and tests will be given and athletics will continue.

But, lives are changed.

In a press release from the New Manchester Volunteer Fire Department, " ... Engine 52 was traveling north with a full complement of six firefighters on board when it was struck in the front by a vehicle traveling in the opposite direction.

"Three firefighters were injured in the crash, but all immediately tended to the occupants of the other vehicle involved and called for appropriate assistance. The injured firefighters were subsequently transported to the hospital, treated, and released. Tragically, none of the three occupants of the other vehicle survived the crash.

"Our thoughts and concerns go out to the families and friends of the victims of this horrific incident as well as to the firefighters and other emergency responders who were involved and assisted. This event will have a lasting and far-reaching impact on our community with the lives of many people involved both directly and indirectly changed forever."

People will struggle with this tragedy and that is to be expected.

We need to be there to help them with that struggle.

There will be a camo candlelight vigil at 7 p.m. tonight at the pool parking lot.

Candles will be available, but please bring some.

Be with your friends.

Prayers appreciated.

Hugs welcomed.

Tears expected.

(Mathison, a Weirton resident, is the sports editor of the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and can be contacted at mmathison@heraldstaronline.com)

 
 

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