The Chance to Say Goodbye: Hope for Grieving Parents
On November 18, 1999, a tragic accident at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas, claimed the lives of twelve young people and seriously injured twenty-seven others when the annual bonfire to celebrate the University of Texas versus Texas A&M Thanksgiving football game collapsed during the final stages of construction.
Eleven young people died at the scene, but the twelfth victim, Timothy Doran Kerlee, Jr., lived almost forty-two hours before succumbing to his injuries. Seven months after his death, his parents left their secular life in Memphis, Tennessee, and moved to College Station to work as volunteers in campus ministry at the very school where their son had died. What happened to cause this couple to make such a life-changing decision?
The Chance to Say Goodbye answers that question, while telling the tale of a young hero, who, on that fateful night, refused aid for himself until his friends had been helped. Author Janice Cross Kerlee offers help to parents who have lost children. She assists them in dealing with their grief and teaching their friends how to help in a time of need. Finally, The Chance to Say Goodbye testifies to the mighty works of God and His ever-present love.
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I thought I was reading something to tell me what FOW "hell week" was like..I read this story and my heart is broken. I have been crying uncontrollable. My sister lost her only son and husband just one year ago this month and my son just started FOW at Texas A&M. My emotions are running high and the realization that God only gives them to us for a short while to raise but they are HIS children. I can't image what you must of gone through to be there and say "good buy" to your son. To tell him it's ok to let go and go be with Jesus. I'm still learning how to be there for my sister as she deals with her new reality of losing her family and now although so different the emotional release of letting go of my son as he starts a new chapter. Reading your story has touched me immensely. I don't know what God has in store for my son but I know he is always in "His Father" hands.
God Bless you!