A pair of recent accidents in the mid-valley, each involving a slow-moving vehicle, have left two young people — one a teenager, one a toddler — dead.
My heart goes out to those kids’ families and everyone connected with them, especially the two drivers. I don’t know them, but I pray that they find the strength to carry on, because I know it will be hard.
I’ve never been in their shoes, but close.
When my son Bob, now 24, turned 2, we had just moved back to the valley and settled in a house off of Soap Creek Road.
The house had a detached garage, and the garage had a loft that was maybe 8 feet off the ground.
One day not long after we had moved in, I was looking for something in the loft as Bob milled around on the garage floor below. Shoving stuff around as I did my search, I accidentally jostled something I didn’t even know was there — a concrete block that probably weighed 10 pounds.
The block slid over the edge of the loft and fell to the floor with terrifying force. It wasn’t like it missed Bob by an inch, but it did land within a few feet of him, close enough to make me shudder all over again right now as I recount the incident.
Had it hit him, it likely would have killed him, and if that had happened, my life would have ended that day too in many ways. It would have been a total accident, but it would have been really hard to soldier on. Hanging in there for my daughter Pam, now 22, likely would’ve motivated me to keep trying, I hope.
Not long after that near miss, I was part of a work group that included my wife, her brother and father, and our nephew; her brother, Bill, was leading the crew, whose mission that day — I think it was July 4, 1990 — was to take down a problem tree at their dad’s place.
The job was going to be sort of tricky, requiring a rope to pull the tree in the right direction, but Bill had timber felling experience, and the tree did go down right where he wanted it to.
Trouble was, no one including me had thought to make sure his dad’s dog, a medium-size, golden-brown mongrel named Candy, was out of harm’s way, and the tree landed on her; a wave of nausea courses through me as I type that.
She let out a horrible cry. I rushed to her and got her picked up, but by the time I got her in the car to rush her to the vet, she was gone. I’ll never get over what happened or my role in it.
Anyway, if you’re inclined to pray, pray for those aforementioned drivers. It’s going to be really hard on them for quite awhile, I would imagine.
And now today’s Catch of the Day, No. 22, a circa-1960 Rawlings Johnny Podres. It was Podres who pitched the Brooklyn Dodgers to their lone World Series title, over the Yankees in 1955.
I got this glove at Play It Again Sports in Corvallis for around $10 maybe five years ago: