A few summers ago my husband took me and our itty bitties to the Ozark Mountains in Arkansas. He knew how much I loved and still love waterfalls and he found this gorgeous serene place that had a couple different waterfalls and swimming areas. It was picturesque, so beautiful and calm. We had food and drinks with us so we ended up staying for hours, just swimming and enjoying some family time away from society. Don’t get me wrong there were others enjoying the waterfalls as well, but it wasn’t densely populated. This place was very remote. Away from all civilizations, no cell phone connection, in fact the nearest hospital was hundreds of miles away….the kind of place where if something bad were to happen we would be fucked. When we finally decided to go home, we noticed there was a couple standing around on the one way unpaved road. It appeared as if they were having some car trouble and their car was blocking our only way out. My husband decided to stop and see if they needed some help. When he got off, he was not prepared for what he was going to see next. A pickup truck had been driven down an embankment by an intoxicated driver. He had 4 young adult passengers with him. Two of the four passengers, a guy and a girl, had already crawled up into safety, as well as the driver, but the other two were still stuck inside the truck. The windshield had been shattered and there was a lot of front edge damage. Luckily, the truck was stumped by a tree trunk which kept it from rolling deeper into the embankment and God knows what else! I ran out of our truck and left my children in it, to see if I could help, when I noticed that one of the passengers that was stuck, was climbing up onto the road. It was another girl. She was delirious and I didn’t blame her. Blood everywhere, glass stuck in different parts of her body and just crying from everything that she had been through. Thankfully they were all breathing and mobile, but we were Miles AND Miles away from civilization! What could we do??? There wasn’t any phone service for us to call 911. All of a sudden the driver of the wrecked truck yelled, “Take them to the hospital! Take them! I’m okay and I will help my friend get out, he’s okay.” Quickly, the Male passenger and my husband helped the two girls into our truck. Our two boys moved to the far back seat of our Chevy Suburban to make room for them. I grabbed our 10 month old babygirl from her carseat and hopped in the front seat with her. We took off like a bat out of hell!
70mph with a truck full of strangers blood oozing all over seats, glass pieces falling off their bodies onto our rugs. As my husband is driving, I’m talking to them to keep them awake just in case they had a concussion. I’m asking questions about what their plans had been for the day, where they were from. We were scared, but they were terrified. They were so afraid that they couldn’t even tell us the truth about how the accident happened because they feared that we would tell the cops. The only thing we were worried about was getting them to the hospital on time. I remember having to remind them of that over and over again. I also remember them thanking us over and over again. As I’m carrying on the conversations, I also kept checking my cellphone for service so that I could finally call 911. It was the longest and most stressful hour and half drive we’d had ever been on! Our kids were in disbelief the whole time but surprisingly calm. Then I started to see black lines…. escalating, bars were starting to come up on my cellphone screen. It was time to call for help. About 15 minutes later we see ambulances and emergency vehicles speeding in our opposite direction. Everyone knew where they were headed. Seeing this shifted a blanket of tranquility and hope over us. Some how at that moment we felt that everything was going to be okay. Our Suburban started to slow down and so did my heart. I could see the hospital. We had made it. We helped unload the victims and briefed the medical staff on our journey and what had brought us to that point. We also exchanged contact information with the victims in case they needed anything else from us, and just like that a lifetime connection had been made.
We actually never heard from them again. However, I was able to find out a few days later, via the local newspaper, that they had survived and were released from the hospital the same day. Till this day, everytime we wipe down our leather seats, we recall how we spent the day after the incident cleaning up the blood and glass from our Suburban. We think about the victims, the waterfalls, and ask ourselves if we will ever forget about the day that we traveled miles and miles to the Ozarks.