"You have to work hard to offend Christians. By nature, Christians are the most forgiving, understanding, and thoughtful group of people I've ever dealt with. They never assume the worst. They appreciate the importance of having different perspectives. They're slow to anger, quick to forgive, and almost never make rash judgments or act in anything less than a spirit of total love . . . No, wait--I'm thinking of Labrador retrievers!" David Learn, 1998

Monday, April 30, 2012

Todd and Tish: Praise for God's mercy

Thank you, Louise, for letting me know the pictures are showing now!  :o)

     At 2:30 on the morning of April 19, Todd Raynesford of Downey, California was driving home from his job as RadTech (radiologic technician) at a nearby hospital. He was at the peak of the transition curve from the 105 east to the 605 north, high above the ground, when he was hit head-on by a woman with twice the legal amount of alcohol in her system, driving an SUV the wrong way.
     Todd's Camry flew into the air, spun around, landed on top of the concrete guardrail and burst into flames. All Todd remembers is light and pain.

Todd's Camry, after head-on collision on Los Angeles freeway early April 19. SUV which hit him is in the background.

     There "happened" to be one other vehicle on that freeway that night--a tow truck. The driver saw the accident and pulled over. He called 911, aimed his industrial fire extinguisher on the flames, and secured Todd's car with cables, keeping it from going over the K-rail.
    It took paramedics 45 minutes to extract Todd from the Camry using the Jaws of Life.
    Since then, Todd has been in ICU, with periodic extended trips to surgery for repairs on the broken bones in his right foot, ankle, knee, leg, right arm, and face (seven hours for his face alone, including both eye sockets, cheekbone, nose). His crushed elbow will have to be dealt with later and his broken clavicle and ribs (both sides) will have to heal on their own.
     Brought out of an induced coma two days after the accident, Todd was able to answer questions like, "Can you hear us?" "Do you know who I am?" with a raised thumb or words spelled out in the air with one finger. Within 72 hours of the accident, doctors removed Todd's breathing tube and he was having conversations with his wife, Tish. But excruciating pain was setting in. The doctor told him he must try to stand up anyway, to prevent blood clots. His head is swollen to twice its normal size. There is danger of infection. At some point doctors will have to wire his mouth shut because he must not move his jaw for 5-8 weeks.
     But in all of this, Todd and Tish are praising God. Todd lived. He is conscious. His brain appears to be undamaged. They are trusting God for healing of his body. This is their message:
     "Please send these photos out to as many people as possible, so that others can see what God has done and what God is doing with us. Our prayer is that all who see these photos and hear our story will fall on their knees and know that there is a God or will help others to have a deeper walk with the most HOLY GOD. God has been there with us in such a real way in our lives like never before. The names of God have become our living strength. We both know that God will take this tragedy and turn it around for His Glory.  We want God's Kingdom to live in this and through this. We are continuously experiencing God in a deep way."
It took paramedics 45 minutes to remove Todd from the car, using the Jaws of Life.

Driver's side: Todd has at least 16 broken bones, 5 of them in his face.

Car was spun around and left hanging over concrete rail of elevated freeway.

Tish wants to thank all who are praying for her, Todd and their family.

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