My brother, Chris, was born September 29, 40 something years ago. When he was 2, he was run over by a van, twice. Chris had crawled underneath the family van in our driveway. My dad had been working underneath the van and didn't notice that Chris had crawled in after him.
|Chris is the one with the halo!|
Dad had finished fixing whatever he was fixing and was cleaning his hands when Mom got in the van to go somewhere. I still remember my Dad's scream when he saw Mom back the van over Chris. Mom didn't know what she had run over. She had felt the bump. Perhaps she thought it was a tool or something. So she went forward to get off of the "bump" and ran over Chris again.
Again Dad screamed and Mom, paralyzed with fear, stopped the van on top of Chris. I can remember Dad tearing open the back of the van to get the jack. He jacked the van up off of Chris, pulled him out, and of course drove like a mad man to the nearest emergency room.
Somethings you never forget, like the look on my parents' face when they came home with Chris, complete with tire marks embedded in his two year old back, but not a single broken bone, and quite alive. A miracle, yes. Needless to say, Chris was ever thereafter, my mother's favorite son. And I never begrudged her a bit.
Adventures were not over for Chris. As a teenager, he rolled his jeep down a mountain. The jeep was totaled, Chris manged to crawl out with a few cuts and bruises. About a week before his wedding a few years later, Chris and his fiance lay upside down in his pickup truck cab. Someone had run a red light and Chris had plowed into the side of the other vehicle so hard that his truck flipped over the other car and landed upside down in the intersection.
Chris and his wife were married a few days later - his wife in a cast and both of them with severe cuts and bruises. Guardian angels you say? Perhaps that's why God gave us Chris on September 29, the Feast of St. Michael and the Archangels. You might say that "Happy Birthday", has a special meaning for Chris...and for those of us who remember seeing his 2 year old body under the wheel of the van that day. What we didn't see was St. Michael and his fellow Archangels holding it up till Dad got the jack under it.
Happy Birthday, brother.