How Could We Comprehend the Pain that Was about to Strick
we struck camp that Friday morning and loaded to leave our first
wonderful family vacation in the friendly country of Canada, it was with
joy and gladness that we drove away hoping for another such outing in
another year or two. Not far from our campsite we merged into the long
line of travelers going over the border from beautiful Canada into the
Good Ole United States of America.
After we left the
last gate giving us the freedom of home, we settled back to enjoy the
scenery and ride through the Michigan landscape. We were in Carlene's
van. She rode behind the front seat passenger. I rode shotgun. Joanna
had the wheel. The Kids were settling into their favorite spots.
After an hour outside Canada, Joanna's phone rang. She answered, spoke a
word or two then want silent for a few seconds, then pulling onto the
shoulder of the road she looked at me and said with a terribly broken
voice, Dad I don't know how to tell you this; but, Jeremy's no longer
here. Jeremy died this morning. I was uncomprehending. We all wept
sourly at the awful, unbelievable report that Jeremy, our believed 46
year old son had suddenly died of a heart attack.
were on an interstate with plenty of traffic and no proper place to pull
over or get out. In a short way along the road we came to a parking
area. There we pulled off and climbed out. The six of us hugged and
cried individually and in a circle, just what ever seemed to met our
needs at the moment. Joanna told the story as she had heard it from the
police man, a boy who had been in her graduation class from High
School. Jeremy, our second son, the middle of our five children, lived
in Hopkinsville, Kentucky. He had been Minister of Music at the First
United Methodist Church of Hopkinsville for several years.
had a degree in Forestry, but loved music just a little bit better. He
was an avid bicycle rider. He connected well with the city bike shop
and the men and women who gathered there often to ride the roads and
by-ways of Christian County. Friday was his day off and those days he
and others often took longer rides. Early every day available, before
work, he / they got in a few miles. After several years of riding, he
was working his way up to 100 to 150 mile per week. Over the years he
had gained weight and saw biking as a way toward health as well an
excise and good fellowship with many friends. Gladly, over time, he had
lost many pounds of weight.
Some bikers ride racing bikes
and some mountain bikes. Jeremy's were racers. Some friends liked
mountain biking. He had fixed up a mountain bike and was excited to
have his first experience on the big tires that day. Only one friend
was available that Friday. They were prepared and ready. Bikes were
secured in the back of his pickup. They drove west from Christian
County to the Land between the Lakes, parked the pickup, unloaded and
started up the trail.
After a while they saw a Welcome
Center ahead. Jeremy said to his friend, "My chest is hurting a little,
I think I'll stay and rest a while. You go on, I'll catch up." But
the friend waited around a bit, then said he'd go back and bring up the
pickup. By the time he returned, Jeremy had collapsed. Someone
immediately began CPR, 911 had been called. By the time Pickup and
Friend arrived an ambulance was on the seine. The ambulance crew did
their best and the Paducah, Kentucky hospital did their best for two
hours to no avail.
It was Jeremy's day to move from
Hopkinsville to Heaven and live with God forever. We can't tell you our
pain. We can tell you we know where he is and we can go there, too.
Not every body goes there. But any body can go there. The requirement
is to believe Jesus Christ as your Saviour and Lord. Ask His
forgiveness of all your sin and let Him become King of your heart and