Nov 19, 2023 | by The Fellowship
In October my sweet friend from high school and I were returning from a nine-day adventure which included visiting sites in Washington, D.C., and several Civil War battlefields. We had one more day planned at yet another National Historic Site before heading back to our homes in Iowa. (Then I would journey to Houston where my winters are spent).
I was feeling great while traveling 70 m.p.h. on Interstate 76 in western Pennsylvania about 8:30 at night. All in a matter of seconds, I saw a doe outside the right front windshield and heard my friend scream -- along with the dreaded sound of crunching metal and shattering glass. There were construction barriers all along the road, so I had no choice but to continue to the first emergency exit.
Getting out of my car, I was horrified to see the extensive damage done. The right front of my Chrysler Town & Country minivan was a mangled mess. The headlight was still functioning, but it was precariously dangling, and the front bumper was hanging about an inch from the ground. We needed to make the decision on whether to keep driving or to call AAA for a tow truck. The traffic was heavy, and it seemed like a dangerous place to wait.
My friend encouraged me to keep proceeding down the highway since we had driven several miles already with no obvious engine problems. I put on my emergency flashers and headed out. A trucker saw our dilemma and followed us with his lights flashing as well and another truck stayed in front of us, leading the way 17 miles to the first available exit.
There I pulled into a gas station to collect myself. The passenger door would not open, so my friend had to climb over my seat to get out. While I was putting a little gas in my tank, she noticed a white truck that had pulled in just after us. She went up to the male driver and said, “We hit a deer. Can you help us?”
“Sure! I am a collision specialist,” was his reply. Now, I am a mathematician and statistics intrigue me. I am guessing that the probability of encountering a person with his expertise in a town I later learned had a population of 101 would be less than 1%.
His name was Josh and he proceeded to rip away random pieces of my vehicle, saving those he thought were salvageable. He worked for at least 30 minutes while his teenaged daughter waited patiently in the truck. I offered twice to compensate him, but he absolutely refused, saying: “I am just happy I can help you ladies out.”
He popped open the right door so that my friend could get in and out of the car without having to contort her body. Searching in his truck for zip ties to secure all the loose wires, he was not able to find any. I suggested we look for something in the convenience store and came out with duct tape! Problem solved!
We asked if he thought I could drive my badly injured vehicle 900 miles back to Iowa. He said I might get a ticket for not having a bumper or headlight, but otherwise the engine seemed to be okay. The only warning messages that came on were “right front turn signal not functioning” (yeah, it was no longer there) and “windshield washer not available” (we thought most likely the windshield could make it without needing instant washing).
As my grandma always used to say when a crisis was somehow averted: “The Good Lord was with us!” He surely was with my friend and me that October night. Neither of us was in any way injured. Our Lord sent a “knight in shining truck,” so I did not have to leave my car in a body shop in Pennsylvania. He so wondrously supplied my needs. Praise be to God for His infinite mercies!
My God shall supply all your need according
to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:19 KJV