Book Squirt

A Fatal Accident

I wrote this a couple of days ago, right after my family and I were at the scene of a fatal accident.

A couple of weeks ago, I could have said “I’ve never seen or helped at a fatal car accident.” I can’t say that anymore.

Now I can say that I’ve watched a car surrounded by flames, knowing that there was a man still trapped inside.


Now I can say that I’ve prayed more than ever before, praying that they could get the driver out in time.

The car that burned – source

Now I can say that I’ve sobbed with a girl when she asked and was told the driver of the other car didn’t make it.

Natalie’s car – source

I wish I couldn’t say any of those things.

I wish that they’d been able to get Dennis Godsave out of that car.  I wish I hadn’t been there. But at the same time, I’m glad I was. I’m glad my Dad and the other men at the scene were able to get Drew and his Grandma out. The police (and therefore the news) didn’t know this, because they weren’t there yet, but they had to cut Drew out of his seatbelt. If someone hadn’t had a pocket knife, they wouldn’t have been able to get him out.

I wish I hadn’t seen and heard how devastated Natalie was. As someone who’s learning to drive, this scared me. A lot.  I wish I hadn’t been there. But at the same time, I’m glad I was. I’m glad that I could hold her up when the shock started to take over and she couldn’t hold herself up. I’m glad my Mom could talk to her, and tell her that it wasn’t her fault. Natalie kept saying “It’s my fault, it’s my fault” and Mom told her that it wasn’t. That when a car swerves in front of you, your natural instinct is to swerve away and that’s what Natalie did.

I wish I hadn’t been there. But at the same time, I’m glad I was.

I’ll never know why God made this happen. Maybe I needed to see it, maybe God just needed Mom and Dad to be there to help. I don’t know, and I won’t. But what I do know is that I was there for a reason.

I’m still coming to terms with what happened. I didn’t really sleep that night, or the next. I cried almost non-stop that night, and for most of the next day. And I wasn’t the only one – some of my siblings were almost as bad as I was. They hadn’t even gotten out of the car, and they were haunted by what they’d seen from a distance.

Watching a car burn, knowing that someone was still inside, that was one of the worst moments of my life. When the men who were trying to get him out had to give up, that was a close second. Holding Natalie (and crying with her) when she learned that he didn’t make it, and hearing her sob that it was her fault, that was a close third. And meeting his family? Well, I’m not exactly sure where that ranks in the list. It was hard though.

Drew’s parents came by our house two days after the accident, and it was really good. Seeing them, being able to cry with them for a bit, it was so healing. Hearing that Drew hadn’t even spent a night in the hospital was wonderful, and they might bring him out to come see us. We’ve since met several more members of the family, and they’re all wonderful people.

It’s going to be hard, but I’m starting to be at peace. Writing about it always helps, and I’ve been talking to people about it and that’s helped a lot.

Everyone has been so supportive and I’m truly grateful for all of the texts, emails, and phone calls we’ve gotten. This reminds me a lot of the tornado. Both the accident and the tornado were traumatic experiences that rocked my world. And just like the tornado, this accident is going to take some time to get over. But like the tornado, once I’m back to normal, though it will be a completely different normal, I know I’m going to look back and see how much I grew through this.

This has been a really difficult experience, but with God’s grace, we’ll get through it stronger than before. And not just my family, but everyone affected by the accident – the Godsave family, the Bomar family, and all of the other Good Samaritans who helped.

 

 

 

PS – the local news did a piece on it if you want to find out more of the details, and my brother Colter also wrote about it.

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Category: Just Thoughts
  • Lori says:

    Brett, I was an emergency room nurse for a few years and I still work ICU. I can tell you that while you never forget the things you see, you can rest in knowing that the God of the universe is sovereign over all. He used you to bring comfort to people in a very hard situation. That never, ever, gets easier, but I know that God was glorified through your kind actions.

    October 24, 2013 at 10:52 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you so much, Lori. That really means a lot to me. 🙂

      October 25, 2013 at 9:18 AM
  • Marsha Evans says:

    Brett, this is a beautiful expression of your feelings. Something like this is always traumatic, and you’re right, you will grow from it. Your faith will help you through this difficult time, and you and your family can forever know that a child was saved because of them, The new friendship will help both families heal. And, I do believe that God placed your family there for a reason. May peace come to you, and everyone else affected by this tragedy.

    October 24, 2013 at 10:55 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thanks, Marsha. It’s definitely wonderful knowing that because all of the Good Samaritans stopped, we were able to save Drew and his Grandma, Sandy. 🙂

      October 25, 2013 at 9:22 AM
  • Terri says:

    Like you, I both glad and sad that you were there. (Glad and sad are so inadequate to express those feelings.) I am sad that you were there, because like most parents I want to protect kids from the hard stuff and this was definitely hard stuff. I’m glad you were there though, because we know God gives good gifts and He uses even the hard stuff for His good. (Just look at Joseph’s life, right?) I’m glad that you are already getting a glimpse of that, but I’m sure He’s not done. I’m glad that you have a lot of great support in dealing with this. I’m glad that you all do. It’s a picture of the body of Christ working together like it is supposed to. May God continue to give you ALL His comfort, strength, healing, and peace. Don’t worry about the random broken feelings any of you may experience. It’s all okay to feel, just remember where your healing lies.

    October 24, 2013 at 10:58 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Glad and sad are so inadequate, and yet they’re some of the only words we have for those feelings. Thank you – I know God will continue to help us heal, and hearing everyone’s words of support helps too. 🙂

      October 25, 2013 at 9:28 AM
  • Mary Kay Hahn says:

    Brett, God put your family there for a reason. You, Colter, your Mom and Dad and even your siblings who just stayed in the car and prayed were a blessing to those involved. You will be a better driver and a better person for having this experience despite how painful it is now. May God continue to bring you comfort in the tradition of the Good Samaritan of the gospel. You gave what aid to could to strangers in need.

    October 24, 2013 at 11:05 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you Mary Kay, that means a lot to me. 🙂

      October 25, 2013 at 9:30 AM
  • alisa says:

    I think it was great writing. I’m sorry you had to see such a tragic accident but like you said you were there for a reason. I believe everything happens for a reason whether its good or bad. I pray that you and your family will heal along with the victims family.

    October 24, 2013 at 11:06 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you for your prayers, Alisa! They mean a lot.

      October 25, 2013 at 9:32 AM
  • Sandra Coyer says:

    Dear Brett,
    Your writing made me cry. It was powerful and descriptive enough to bring empathy to those that read it. Your family has already done so much to help. One thing I have found true in my own life is God wants to use our pain and suffering to help others. He wants us to go from victims to survivors. I believe we do that each time we are able to relate and help another through their pain and suffering. I call it “Redeeming your Suffering.” God bless you as you try to process this trauma.

    I was brought up not to ask God “Why?” “Why, is negative when questioning our Heavenly Father. It indicates we think we are on God’s level and he should give an explanation for his decisions. Rather, we should ask him “What?” “What do you want me to get from this Father?” That is a positive question and since God does want us to learn from our experiences, he will answer. Listen to your heart and that still small voice for the answer.

    With The Lord’s love and mine,
    Sandi Coyer

    October 24, 2013 at 11:10 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Sandra, I’m sorry that I made you cry, but I guess that’s a good thing? 🙂 Thank you for sharing that with me!

      October 25, 2013 at 9:33 AM
  • elizabeth says:

    My heart breaks for both families. Losing a loved one in a violent accident is not easy. Glad you have taken the time to put your feelings into words. It helps. Thank you for being so brave.

    October 24, 2013 at 11:10 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      It definitely does help – both times I’ve been in a traumatic situation I’ve written a blog post about it, and it’s always helped. 🙂

      October 25, 2013 at 9:39 AM
  • Deren Stevens says:

    Hi Brett. I am a Facebook subscriber to Goat Milk Stuff and have been praying along with your family as your mom kept us abreast of all that was going on. I agree with you. It was a lucky thing you were there. You and your family helped save more than one life that day. Not just physically, but emotionally, Natalie needed Your shoulder. A non-judgemental, empathic shoulder. God sent the perfect angels at just the right time. We will never truly understand why things happen in life, but every experience will strengthen us and provide us with the armor we need to fight any upcoming battles. Although it’s hard to bear, please know that you are a representative of God and he is proud of you.

    Good bless and take care! You will continue to be in my prayers.

    October 24, 2013 at 11:15 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      God definitely sent the right people – everyone who was there was perfect for the role they played. 🙂 Thank you for your prayers – they help.

      October 25, 2013 at 9:40 AM
  • Marsha Shelton says:

    (Brett: I just posted the following on your brother’s blog and want to post here as well, as I was writing with both of you in mind. I am thankful for your wonderful family and the good example you are for everyone . . . even us grandmas!)

    I have been following your family’s various blogs and/or Facebook posts for a while now and have enjoyed the daily glimpses into your precious family’s lives. Thank you for posting this detailed account of the accident. I know it must have been a very traumatic experience, especially for the little ones. I am not surprised, though, that your family stopped to help, as I feel I have come to know your family as much as is possible without ever having met you. Your parents have done and are doing a great job of training all of you to be good citizens, to do what is right, and to serve others. We don’t always know why certain events or situations are allowed in our lives; however, “Suffering may be inevitable…but God’s purpose is unstoppable” (David Platt). I know many people are praying for your family at this time, as well as those who were injured and/or lost a loved one. Just want to encourage you that as hard as this is, your family was right there for a reason. Keep trusting in God – He knows the end from the beginning. America needs more families like yours!

    October 24, 2013 at 11:41 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you so much, Marsha! That really means a lot to me. 🙂

      October 25, 2013 at 10:00 AM
  • Laura Bazell says:

    Brett,

    I am so sorry that you have lost some of your innocense in such a harsh way. Accidents happen. That’s a part of life. The most frustrating part is often we will never know why. But we have to learn to deal with the event, the emotions, and pull ourselves together to put one foot in front of the other to move forward. The tears do help. They are a pressure release. They are cleansing.

    There were so many life lessons that day. I’m sure you will think back on them from time to time. You’ll never forget, but at some point you will able to make peace with it. It takes time.

    In the meantime, your family, friends, and faith will help. Lean on them. I hope you get a good nights sleep and only sweet dreams very soon.

    Prayers for all for strength and peace…

    Laura Bazell

    October 24, 2013 at 11:43 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Yes, the tears definitely help. I think I spent most of the first two days sobbing. Every time someone said something it would come back and I’d start sobbing again. You should have seen me when Mr. and Mrs. Godsave showed up on our front porch! Thank you for your prayers. 🙂

      October 25, 2013 at 4:56 PM
  • Karyn says:

    Beautifully written and a touching window into your heart Brett!

    October 24, 2013 at 11:44 PM
  • Ivy T says:

    Hi Brett, I was directed to your blog from a post your Mom made on Facebook. After reading your words above, I can tell you are an admirable young lady who is wise beyond your years and your strength is visible in your words. You convey a surety that you will be stronger when this is all over, which makes me SO happy because it tells me that you WILL get past this. You (and all the families involved) are in our thoughts through this rough time. 🙂

    October 24, 2013 at 11:49 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thanks, Ivy. I know that when this is over I’ll be stronger because I’ve been through things like this before, and every time I end up stronger. Changed forever, but stronger.

      October 26, 2013 at 1:58 PM
  • B Deaton says:

    Brett thank you for sharing your thoughts. You will find yourself wondering “why” many times throughout your life. I do not know why you were at that spot at that moment….perhaps it was to help the victims, perhaps it was to help you somehow. I do sincerely believe that God can make beauty come from ashes and that He will. I am praying not only for the victims but for you and your family as well. I know your families helping save Drew and his grandma was a huge blessing to their family. I know you probably wish you could have done more as well but I think your brother was right when he said Dennis would have put the others above himself. Let this experience be a reminder that we should always be prepared to meet our maker for we never know what tomorrow will bring. Many blessings to you my friend.

    October 24, 2013 at 11:52 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you for your prayers! I definitely wish I could have done more, but I know that if all of those men couldn’t get Dennis out, there’s no way I would have been able to. I’m glad I was able to do what I could do. 🙂

      October 26, 2013 at 2:00 PM
  • Micah says:

    A sad event and i’m sorry it had to happen to you and your family.. I am glad that you all where not hurt, but I do understand the whole trauma of it all. It takes time to process something like this as its all just a bit too much. Especially if you haven’t been around it much (which is a good thing imo) Just hang in there Brett.. And in regards to the comment about if noone had a pocket knife someone would have been stuck.. This is the exact reason why my car has one of those multipurpose tools securely mounted that will break glass and cutt a seat belts.. It may or may not ever be needed, but it definitely eases the mind knowing my options… I also favor a fire extinguisher mounted somewhere in the car…

    I’ll keep you and your family in my thoughts..

    Take Care

    October 25, 2013 at 12:00 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      It’s definitely a good thing that I haven’t been around many traumatic events. I don’t know how many more of these I could handle!

      I carry a pocket knife, and most people think it’s weird. Now I have a story to tell when they ask why I do! 🙂

      October 26, 2013 at 2:02 PM
  • Darlene H says:

    I am moved by your willingness to share this with others. I can’t imagine what you have been going through but you have a great deal on your side…your parents, your faith, and I am sure that the family of the individuals involved in this accident are so very glad that you and your family were there to help. You were at the right place at the right time! Peace be with you!

    October 25, 2013 at 12:02 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      The Godsave family has told us over and over how glad they are that we were there and that we were able to help. I know that us being there was a good thing, I just wish I wasn’t having to deal with this emotional roller coaster I’m on right now. 🙂

      October 26, 2013 at 2:30 PM
  • Melissa says:

    Brett
    I know it’s hard to not know why you were on the scene of this fatal accident or why people endure the hardships that they do. God works in mysterious ways that we as humans may not always understand. There was a plan that day as tragic as the event may be. God called on Mr. Godsave that day to come home. Your family are angels sent to assist those in need that day. I can’t help, but be amazed that the last name of the family involved is ‘God Save.’ Kind of says it all..doesn’t it? Although Mr. Godsave perished that day..we all have an end time although it may not be as we planned and it is certainly no one’s fault. I’m sorry you had to witness this tragic event and my prayers go out to everyone involved. I know I will certainly carry a pocket knife everywhere I go now. Through your grieving and writing you are showing all of us how thankful we should be everyday and how quickly life can change in an instant. Please find your inner peace and live everyday to the fullest. May your heart and mind heal (with time).

    God Bless,
    -Melissa

    October 25, 2013 at 12:07 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Yeah, we didn’t know their last name when we were at the accident, since Drew didn’t tell us. Imagine how surprised we were to see the news article that said their last name!

      I’ve carried a pocket knife since I was thirteen, and most people didn’t understand why. Now I have a story to tell!

      October 26, 2013 at 3:09 PM
  • Kristy booth says:

    I am so thankful for your family and all the other heroes that stopped to help the Godsaves and Natalie. Sarah Godsave is a dear friend and coworker of mine and I just can’t thank you all enough for saving her son and her mother in law. It is so tragic and sad that Dennis did not make it, but you guys did all that was humanly possible! Thank you so much for all you did for my precious friends, the Godsaves. People like your family and the others who helped are what help me have renewed faith in people. How brave and awesome that such wonderful people were placed by God at that exact time to help save and comfort these people. You are ALL in my prayers as you try to process all that you saw that fateful night. You guys saved two human beings and not many people in this world can say that. God bless you.

    October 25, 2013 at 12:09 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Kristy, thank you for taking the time to stop and say this! The Godsaves are a wonderful family and I’m so glad we met them, even if it had to be this way. 🙂

      October 26, 2013 at 3:15 PM
  • Jamie Curtis says:

    Brett I can’t imagine what you must be going through ….but you really helped me understand it a bit better. I can pray for you and all involved. It sounds like writing about your thoughts and emotions might be therapy. Thanks for sharing a part of yourself and this story,
    with the world.

    October 25, 2013 at 12:15 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Hey Mrs. Curtis… writing is definitely one of the things I do to help myself process. That, and talking to Sean about it all day. 🙂

      October 26, 2013 at 3:17 PM
  • Heather L. says:

    You are a brave and caring young man. God put your family there because he knew you would be “the helpers,” as Mr. Rogers talked about. As a student driver, you’ll never forget what you saw and will put extra attention on the road when you are behind the wheel. It’s terrible when a life is lost, but so many others could have been and weren’t. Death is always a wake-up call to our own life. Are we on the path that is destined for us? I lost my dad about a month ago and grieving is hard work, but there are many gifts along the path of grief as your family has already discovered. Take the lessons and the gifts and use them to move you forward in your own life. Best to you and your family.

    October 25, 2013 at 12:39 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      I definitely won’t forget this! I’m so sorry about your Dad. 🙁

      October 26, 2013 at 3:20 PM
  • Laura says:

    I am still so sorry that you all went through this, and yet I am so glad you were there – that everyone hwo helped was there to help.

    October 25, 2013 at 12:40 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      God definitely put certain people there – everyone who was there did exactly what needed to be done and had the skills to do what needed to be done. It was wonderful. 🙂

      October 26, 2013 at 3:21 PM
  • Deb Greene says:

    Brett, you are very wise and you have great insight. You will be fine. Moments like these area hat defines us as human beings. Stay strong, continue to talk and write about it. May God continue to bless and bestowe that peace that passes all understanding.
    Deb Greene

    October 25, 2013 at 1:02 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you, Deb! I’ll definitely keep talking about it, and I’ll probably write about it at some point in the future. 🙂

      October 26, 2013 at 3:22 PM
  • Barbara Neiswender says:

    I am so glad that you were there, to think of what might have happened if you were not there to help support that young woman and your family as well as the others that helped. I am glad you were there to help your siblings through such a tough time they will need that for many years to come. You have been giving a blessing to learn how to be strong in a dire situation. I know that may not seam like a lot but believe me it can mean the world to some one that does not posses such a skill. I am glad that you were there and so are so many others. :O)

    October 25, 2013 at 1:48 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      I’m glad I have that skill too! I don’t know what I would have done several times in my life if I hadn’t had that skill. 🙂

      October 26, 2013 at 3:23 PM
  • Wanda Wentz says:

    Brett, You were at that accident for several reasons. It was to help support one of the victims who couldn’t stand up due to shock, and strong, probably overwhelming, emotions. You were there to see an accident up close and personal. Seeing that wreck and knowing someone lost their life will probably make you a safer and more careful, serious driver. You showed bravery in being willing to be involved in helping the survivors along side your mom. There are many lessons to learn from this experience. Every one did and said exactly what they were supposed to say and do. Be at peace and know that God had you there to see, say and experience everything that you did. And you will grow from this experience. Pray for peace of heart and mind. You are wonderful, Brett.

    October 25, 2013 at 2:19 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      I’m definitely going to pay more attention to the road after seeing this wreck. And I know that God had me there for a reason – I just wish I knew what that reason was. 🙂 Thank you!

      October 27, 2013 at 7:27 PM
  • Kristi Faricelli says:

    Thank you for sharing such a heartwarming account of what you recently experienced. I am touched deeply by the fact that you remember the names of the victims, and that you are still in touch with the survivors. You’ve witnessed more than most at such a young age and are dealing with the emotions that come along with such an experience in a very mature way. You’ve learned to take that extra step beyond coping, and are becoming a master at healing. God must have special plans for you in the near future. Bless you.

    October 25, 2013 at 5:44 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      We consider everyone we met through the accident as friends – it’s hard not to, after sharing something like that. 🙂

      October 27, 2013 at 7:36 PM
  • Marsha Corso says:

    What a wonderful post. Keep expressing your feelings to work your way thru this. If you haven’t already, please make sure the family sees this. I feel it will mean a lot to them.

    October 25, 2013 at 5:47 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      I believe the Godsaves have seen this. 🙂 Thank you!

      October 27, 2013 at 7:38 PM
  • Charla says:

    Your article was beautiful. I have been praying for you all ever since I saw your mom first post about this accident. I have also been there during a fatal accident. It stays with you. God will give you peace eventually. Praying for your peace and healing, Charla

    October 25, 2013 at 6:48 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      It definitely stays with you – I’m still not sleeping well, because every time I try to sleep I start thinking about it. 🙁 Thank you for your prayers – they really mean a lot. 🙂

      October 27, 2013 at 7:38 PM
  • Kay Smith says:

    Brett- you and your family are strong, good people, and I believe you were there for a reason. You are in my prayers during your time of healing.

    October 25, 2013 at 7:06 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      I know we were there for a reason, it’s just hard when you don’t know what it is. 🙂 Thank you for praying!

      October 27, 2013 at 7:39 PM
  • Heather says:

    Brett,
    This is Heather, Brady and Kenzie’s mom. I think your post hit it on the head. I’m glad we were there to help. Could you imagine being one of those that drove on? The guilt they feel? God had all of our paths aligned that day so we could be where we were, when we were. It has strengthened my bond with Him and He knew that good deed was going to happen long before we did! So glad that I got to meet such a strong, caring and brave young lady that day!!

    P.s.
    Brady and Kenzie are still playing War! ;”

    October 25, 2013 at 8:09 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Ugh, I can’t imagine if we’d driven on. I’m so glad we stopped! I’m glad we met you guys too. 🙂 You’ll have to come visit so the kids can play War together, and we can talk again. 🙂

      October 27, 2013 at 7:40 PM
  • Sarah C says:

    I’m glad you were there too Brett. God put just the right people on the scene to jump in and help and provide comfort. I’m glad you have a perspective of God’s sovereignty. For a time, I was afraid of flying but had to regularly for my job. My husband reassured me that I was in God’s hands and that nothing will happen to me outside of His allowing it. That gave me peace while I was doing my traveling. In this accident, it was that man’s time to go. Nothing could have stopped it. We can rest in knowing that the timing was in the hands of the One who loved him most.

    October 25, 2013 at 8:35 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Knowing that everything happens in God’s timing is so reassuring! 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 1:58 PM
  • Jennifer says:

    You are a brave young woman, wise beyond your years and you are correct when you say that God put you & your family there for a reason. You may not know that reason now, but one day you will. I pray that the days get easier for you & your family as you heal from this devistating event.

    October 25, 2013 at 8:39 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you, Jennifer! And thank you for your prayers – they’re much appreciated. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:34 PM
  • Beverly says:

    I’m not sure I could have handled it as well as you have. I can only imagine how hard it has been for you and your family. You sound so mature and honest. I believe talking about it is a good thing. I’m not as good with words as you are but I’ve been praying for everyone involved. I believe in prayer and after reading your post I know prayer works. This life experience will always be with you and it will make you stronger. Those people were so lucky to have your family there. I admire you and your family for your strength, compassion and grace. We never know when God will need us to do His work here in an exceptional way. You were called and you answered. I’m so proud of you.

    October 25, 2013 at 8:54 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      I’m not handling it very well, to be honest. I’m not sleeping well, and I get this close to crying when someone mentions it. But thank you for your prayers – I’m getting better, crying less, and I know it’s because of all the people praying for us. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:37 PM
  • Kim (Bried) Theuner says:

    Brett,
    I hope you continue to heal. What a tragic thing to have experienced; and I’m sorry for your family. As a learning driver, this was probably important to see -things can happen so fast when you’re going 60 mph…. Best wishes for you, your family and the other families involved.
    Kim

    October 25, 2013 at 8:59 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Honestly, it’s made me scared to drive. So while I know that it was important to see, I wish I hadn’t. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:38 PM
  • emmjae says:

    i believe in the healing power of writing and i believe that God has a reason for whatever He asks us to deal with… i am thankful for caring people like you and your family to help others in the time of need… oh, i think about you all every week day when i drive by the store on my way to/from work. 😉

    October 25, 2013 at 9:01 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Writing is one of the things I do that helps me process anything. I love writing! 🙂 You should stop by sometime – we’re usually open from 10-2, but a lot of times we’re there later than that. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:39 PM
  • Bethany says:

    Brett, you are so young to have experienced something of this magnitude. The hardest moments in life feel like they are breaking you apart, but after the healing process, you become a stronger person. You are an incredibly brave and strong young woman. I’m praying for the victims families and for yours.

    October 25, 2013 at 9:16 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      I know I’ll be stronger after this… I just wish I could’ve gotten stronger without this. 🙂 Thank you for praying!

      October 28, 2013 at 3:40 PM
  • Bruce Sallan (@BruceSallan) says:

    Very powerful experience and I felt it from your passionate writing. Sadly, these experiences tend to mold us into the people we will be. I’ve gotten to know you Brett via #DadChat and I know you’re a caring, compassionate human being. Life is precious and I know you know that now, more than ever. My prayers go to the family and my feeling of pride swells when I think of you and your contribution to saving those lives!

    October 25, 2013 at 10:56 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you, Bruce. I definitely know that life is precious – I’ve been around enough death to know that. Thank you for your prayers – they mean a lot to everyone involved. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:42 PM
  • katrina Gladdish says:

    Brett, your right, you will never know why. Why Natalie. Why Drew and his Grandmother. Why your family. Why the man could not be saved. Why your family had to be so near when this happened. Ask God why He made the mosquito, the flea, the elephant, the whale.
    Why does every man on Earth have to have ups and downs in his life. Because, we all have to learn lessons. What lesson be learned ? You said your learning to drive….maybe your lesson is to be a safe, cautious, and courteous driver. Maybe your lesson is about the value of human life, and to see suffering first hand. Maybe now you will be a fireman, paramedic, Emergency room physician, or nurse, grief counselor, better road designer for safer highways.
    Keep asking Why ? You and your family do need to heal from the trauma, and you will. I promise, you will. You wont always feel sick to your stomach every time you think of the accident. Keep talking about it and your feeling to your parents. Do not bottle your pain up. Write, talk, draw, jog, scream, meditate, pray, milk a goat, what ever heals you. One day you will realize you have not thought about it in a few days, then you will realize, you are closer to healed.
    Keep asking yourself why? You will realize that, not today, not tomorrow, maybe 40 years in your future, Why will have been answered.
    I send you Prayers, Peace, Blessings.
    Katrina

    October 25, 2013 at 3:46 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Wow Katrina… thank you for taking the time to write all of that! Hearing from so many people after this accident has been a huge part of the healing process for me and my family. Thank you so much. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:43 PM
  • Bonnie Zarkar says:

    Praying for you and all involved as you recover from the shock of this accident! Praise the Lord for your help to those in need.

    October 25, 2013 at 5:15 PM
  • Donna Mechura says:

    Oh, Brett! you’re so wonderful!! you know I love you and that I think you are the most amazing person.

    October 25, 2013 at 7:05 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Love you too, Aunt D! Can’t wait to see you at Thanksgiving. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:45 PM
  • Shirley Rice says:

    Brett, God put you there to comfor Natalie. She will always remember you and that you were there.
    Your mom and day have instilled in you the love of God and for others. God bless you! Young people like you and your brother are just what this world needs. Love you!

    October 25, 2013 at 7:58 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thanks, Shirley! Mom and Dad have done a great job teaching us – I wouldn’t have it any other way. Even with the traumatic side effects. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:48 PM
  • Trudy Sturgeon says:

    As a friend of the Godsave family, i thank God for you and your family being there
    I hope in time it gets easier for you. You sound like a wonderful person and God bless you

    October 26, 2013 at 1:55 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      I hope it gets easier too! I know that meeting with the Godsave family definitely helped – they’re wonderful people. 🙂 May God bless you too!

      October 28, 2013 at 3:49 PM
  • Teri says:

    II was a driver waiting way back in the long line of cars waiting for the accident to be cleaned up. I had no idea what happened at the time, but I wanted you to know that I was praying for the people helping, for the injured and for the families of those injured. I hope knowing this adds to the support and comfort all of you will need to get through this. God bless all of you.

    October 26, 2013 at 11:38 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you for praying – without prayer, we (as in, everyone helping at the accident) probably wouldn’t have been able to get Drew and Mrs. Godsave out of that truck. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:50 PM
  • Grammy says:

    Brett – it is wonderful that so many people have supported you with love and words just as you supported those in need. We reap what we sow. Big hug from Grammy.

    October 26, 2013 at 5:00 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Love you so much, Grammy. 🙂

      October 28, 2013 at 3:50 PM
  • Nicole Bradshaw says:

    Brett, you are truly and amazing lady!! Thank you so much for sharing your story and how you are coping wth it.

    October 26, 2013 at 8:56 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thank you so much, Nicole! 😀

      October 28, 2013 at 3:51 PM
  • Grandma says:

    Hi Brett…what an incredible experience for all of you. Your writing and description of the accident were were excellent…it made the reader seem as though they were right there…your ability to share your emotions and feeling is a true gift. I am so sorry that the accident happened and that Dennis lost his life…but all of you, and the others I don’t know, being there made such a diffence to all those involved. I was very pleased that you and Mom spent time with the young girl who was cut off…she has along road ahead of herself but time will ease the pain. Poppy and I are so proud of you and your Dad and Mom…as well as all of your brothers and sisters. We love you and can’t wait to see you in a few weeks. Keep writing. Brett, you are a natural

    October 27, 2013 at 8:13 PM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Love you Grandma, and can’t wait for Thanksgiving. 🙂 Thank you!!

      October 28, 2013 at 3:52 PM
  • Jolene Haley says:

    Hey Brett. What a powerful blog post here. I’m so terribly sorry for the awful experience but I’m grateful for the deep introspection and appreciation for life that it gave you. Life is too short. It really is. And I think that now you’re one of the few that truly understands that saying. Stay strong girl! <3

    November 16, 2013 at 5:13 AM
    • Brett Jonas says:

      Thanks, Jolene! <3 It's been really difficult, processing this, and hearing from all of my friends has helped a lot. 🙂

      November 18, 2013 at 6:59 PM

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