I used to wonder why in movies people would sit down before receiving bad news. I always thought it was odd that people thought words would knock them off their feet. Well, I don't think that anymore. I received a phone call seven years ago that literally dropped me to my knees.
It was a Friday, and it was Valentine's day. Jason was working with the youth banquet at church, so I had a date with a very handsome 2 year old. Jason and I had planned on going out the next night. I was teaching at the time, so after school, I picked Ethan up and headed home. Jason was already at the church setting up. As Ethan played and I was getting ready for the evening, the phone rang.
My niece Amanda was calling to tell me that my niece Charlie and nephew Hamp had been in a car wreck on the way home from school. Charlie was being transported to the hospital, but Hamp was dead. He was 12 years old. After a few questions, I hung up the phone. That is when I fell to the ground. I felt like my legs had been swept out from underneath me.
As quickly as I could, I got myself under control and tried calling Jason. He didn't answer his cell phone, so I called the church office. I don't know who answered the phone to begin with, but when I asked for Jason they went to look for him. I thought I had my emotions and voice under control, but I must not have. In just a few moments, one of the deacons, Butch Kee was on the phone. He started his conversation saying, "Kerry, we can't find Jason. What is wrong?" I told him that my niece and nephew had been in a car wreck and that my nephew had died. I never told him their names. He found Jason for me and sent him home. We quickly packed and headed to Camden.
Butch's son Jeff Kee was the band director for my niece and nephew. Butch called his son, and before most people had heard the news, Jeff was at the hospital to check on my family. That weekend, Jeff, his family, and other families from the band ministered to my sister, brother-in-law, niece, and all of us.
I don't have the answer of why Hamp died that day, but I know without a doubt that God was looking out for those of us left behind grieving. I don't believe that it was a coincidence that Jason didn't answer his phone or that Butch Kee was the one I spoke to. God laid the ground work for the team of people that ministered to my family. I would like to thank each person that stepped up that weekend, changed their plans, and just took the time to allow God to use them to help us.