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Lavon resident writes essay honoring victims of fatal crash

Last updated on November 7, 2019

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Written by Gaylan Grant
Used with express permission from author


When writing on a subject like this, I always like to start with a definition to ensure we are talking about the same thing. The definition for tragedy is: an event causing great suffering, destruction, and distress, such as a serious accident, crime, or natural catastrophe.

Unfortunately, what I am writing about fits that definition.
Last night, about 5:45 pm, a truckload of high school students were in a tragic accident. In it’s wake, were four students dead. No euphemisms needed. They died. Four families are devastated. Four moms, four dads…will spend the next 72 hours or so in the vice grips of acute grief. Decisions they never thought they would have to make demand answers. Their tear ducts will run dry and their sobs will not only be heard but will be felt. Their homes will not beat with the vibrancy of youthful enthusiasm. They will tell their story to whomever will listen. On many occasions, their story will be the “elephant in the room.” Friends and acquaintances will not know whether to say anything or to keep quiet. Prayerfully we hope no one says to them, “you’ll get over it, it just takes time.” They won’t get over it. It is now part of the script of their lives.

That haunting, daunting question, “Why?” Followed by all of the “if onlys”, sleeplessness, anger, depression and all of the other pseudonyms of grief will seem to accompany them wherever they go. All of the events of life will be referred to as their “last”. All future events will be annotated with “without them” or “they’ll never get to”.

November 5, 2019, at 5:45 PM, in Lavon, Texas, on State Highway 78, tragedy occurred. There are no colorful rainbows or happy tears. The dark cloud of grief has superseded our collective happiness. Yet there is one thing which will carry us through this time of heaviness. Our faith in the Almighty Savior of mankind has assured us that, “though we walk in the shadow of death we will fear no evil for He is with us.” He said, “I am the resurrection and the life…because I live you shall live also.” Paul the Apostle observed that we “sorrow not as those who have no hope.” Job said, “I know my Redeemer lives…yet shall I see God.”

It is our faith and our hope that will come to us amid the pain and sorrow. Faith and hope will sustain and heal the broken hearted. Faith and hope is the one thing that will keep us afloat on the sea of heartache.

My prayers are with the families and all who live under the umbrella we call our Community. Our differences pale in the hour of collective mourning. May love, expressed and accepted, transform each of our lives so that this tragedy doesn’t define us.

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