Part #6: …”Bein’ Prepared”: …“It’s a good thing I had witnesses”…
“Bein’ Prepared is somethin’ that was always taught to & instilled in me from my Mother”.
Back in 1994 when my family & I lived in Anniston, AL I worked for a Caterpillar Dealership. I was a Sales Representative for the Industrial Equipment, Fork Lift, side of the business. Anyway, my daughter was attending Anniston High School. Well, that year, Anniston was having a very good year in Football. They were in contention for the State Championship, in the 6A Division & went on to WIN IT!
This particular evenin’ I was drivin’ from Anniston, AL to Columbus, Ga. for the last Regular Season Game. With me were my, soon to be, 16 year old daughter & my 12 year old son. Also a friend of mine, I’ll call him “The Home-builder”, & his middle son were travelin’ with us. His oldest son would be playin’ on the Anniston High School Football Team & was travelin’ with the team on the Team Bus. The Weather that night wasn’t the best. It had been rainin’ on & off all day & that evenin’. It was pretty chilly as well. We were travelin’ along an old two lane stretch of Hwy #431 South. It was in a very rural part of the state we were travelin’ thru, The Talladega National Forrest. No road lights in this area, just the lines on the road, to help with night drivin’. We came across a very recent wreck that involved two cars both with teenagers, a male & female in each car, headed in opposite directions. We made the decision to stop & see if we could assist.
I grabbed my Flashlight from under my seat & we, The Home-builder & I got out. We told OUR kids to “stay in the car”. There didn’t appear to be any life or death type of injuries. But all did have what seemed to be minor cuts. There was however one of the young girls sittin’ on the shoulder of the road, beside the damaged car she had been a passenger in. When I asked her if she was hurt she said her arm was really hurtin’. She was gettin’ wet from the cold light rain fallin’. She wasn’t dressed for the cold evenin’, didn’t have a coat, she had cuts on the bottoms of her feet as she was barefooted. There was shattered glass everywhere. The Home-builder said “we need to do somethin’, but what”? I agreed. I used my Ole Bag Phone to call the State Police, they let me know there was a Patrol Car & an Ambulance on the way.
I went around to the trunk of my car. I dug out a couple of Emergency (Railroad) Flares I kept in my trunk & a blanket. The Home-builder took the Flares back up the road a ways & lit’em. I stayed with the scared, wet, & injured kids. I took my belt off to make a sling out of it & put it around the young girls neck with the injured arm to immobilize it, then wrapped my blanket around her to try to keep her warm & shed the rain/mist off of her. After lookin’ at her feet again I removed my socks & put them on her feet. All with her permission of course.
In just a short time the State Trooper arrived, he took over, we told him what we knew, had done , I gave him my business card. He thanked us, told us the Ambulance wasn’t far away, told us to head on our way. We headed on to our game. We won that night.
On our return trip as we passed the sight of wreck we had assisted with earlier in the evenin’. I’m just glad it wasn’t any worse than it was. I used to travel that road a lot durin’ my workin’ years, & always wondered about her, the young girl, my belt, my blanket, & my socks. It’s a good thing I had witnesses to tell my Bride what had happen to those items I didn’t come home with. “Hold’em Hook”…..BG>