Who Would Have Ever Thought?

As usual we were on our way to the “Y” just before 5 PM.  As we crested the hill behind Publix, we saw the black smoke soaring high into the late afternoon sky. “Somebody’s house is on fire,” I thought. As we turned into the driveway of the Bellevue YMCA we saw the flames. They were not regular flames and we could tell that it was not a house burning. I recall thinking, “Why aren’t there any sirens?” About that time a shaken “Y” employee told us to turn around and leave because a plane had just crashed and the building was being evacuate.  At that moment the wail of emergency equipment seemed to erupt in perfect sync from all directions as first responders rushed to the point of impact. They came in waves and then they came some more. So many came that I feared that perhaps an airliner had gone down. We knew nobody could survive the flames and were praying that it was not a big plane.

As we sit there in bumper to bumper traffic amid the unfolding chaos, I thanked God that the plane had not hit any buildings. From what I learned later, that was probably not by chance but a final act of love from Glenn Mull, the pilot.  I wondered who the victims were and what must have been going on in that doomed plane. I wondered if they were prepared for death and if they had any unfinished business. Was there something they needed to say? Was there someone they needed to forgive?  Was there something they needed to let go?

Who would have ever thought that a plane would crash at the Y, in a small patch of grass, outside a building I spend so much time inside? Your next breath could be your last; do not put anything off that you need to do. Do it right now.

 Something to Think About

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