Have you ever been involved in a situation and later realized that only by the intervention of a Divine Power are you alive and able to tell the tale? I once managed to pull into a gas station, run inside and huddle with a dozen or so people on the floor in the bathroom as three tornadoes were converging on the spot where the station sat.
It was a very sobering experience. As one woman called and left voice mail messages for her children telling them how much she loved them thinking she would not leave that bathroom alive, I ran back to my car and tore out of there. I had been dodging multiple tornadoes all day trying to get home from Virginia, and right or wrong, as I listened to that woman’s conversation I decided I might die that day but it was not going to be on the dirty bathroom floor of a gas station.
As I left Jackson, TN, zig-zagging my way, left then right, onto whatever streets were not littered with debris, I looked over at the beautiful historic church I’d admired so many times, and I could see a dark surface with a cross shape that looked like clouds.
It took a minute to realize that what I was seeing was an open door, hanging ajar behind the gaping hole that used to be the beautiful front door to the church. The interior door, hanging at that weird angle, had a glass window in it shaped like a cross, and the reason it looked like clouds was because there was nothing but the front wall and a little bit of the front corner of the church still standing. All of the interior and the exterior back and side walls were scattered all over West Tennessee.
Perhaps because I remember how it feels to wonder if your next breath may be your last, I stand in awe of Reuben Carrill, Jr. who endured injuries most people cannot imagine, and selflessly uses the accident to try and help others. I won’t tell you Reuben’s story. I’ll let Reuben tell you in his own words. Once you read it, give some serious thought to the safety equipment he says would have prevented his injuries and make an effort to share his story so that with enough support this safety feature might someday be used on every 18-wheeler in the U.S.
Reuben couldn’t have prevented the initial accident, but the damage from the second part of his accident could have been prevented if the truck had been equipped with underrun bars. Sometimes the solution to a big problem is simple and inexpensive and when confronted with the need for it, I wonder why this wasn’t done years ago. Such is the case with underrun bars. Now, watch the video, then click the bar to your left and read about the simple device that would have prevented so much pain and suffering. When you finish, drop Reuben a line and tell him how much you appreciate what he’s done for motorcycle awareness. Ride safe.