Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

A winter of crashes involving people I know February 3, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 11:05 AM

NEVER HAS THERE BEEN a winter when so many people I know have been involved in motor vehicle accidents here in Minnesota.

The latest occurred yesterday, when Allison hit a slick spot on Interstate 35 north of Faribault and rolled her truck. A fence installed in the median to prevent cross-over crashes kept Ali’s vehicle from impacting an oncoming semi. A motorist found Ali dangling from her seatbelt, apparently unhurt. However, she and her unborn baby were being held for observation overnight in a metro hospital.

Last Friday evening, Tiffany rolled her car four times on a Rice County highway after a semi truck, minus the trailer, failed to stop at a stop sign. Tiffany opted to take the ditch rather than slam into the semi cab. She and two passengers received relatively minor injuries, the most serious a sprained wrist and a compression fracture of the elbow.

Molly, who suffered the arm injuries, said she would rather have the pain than what may have been.

Then there’s David, who two months after a serious accident on a snowy county road, remains in a medically-induced coma. I don’t know details of the incident, only that he was run over by a tractor. I pray almost every day for David and his family.

And finally, the most serious crash occurred nearly two weeks ago involving three vehicles on an icy stretch of Minnesota Highway 60 west of Faribault. The accident left 19-year-old Kim, who was born in an Ethiopian refugee camp and came with his Sudanese family to the U.S. in 1994, dead. I did not know Kim personally, but he attended the same Christian day school my children attended. During Sunday morning worship services at my church, Trinity Lutheran, we prayed for Kim’s family and the Sudanese community.

It’s been a long winter already here in Minnesota. But, no matter where you live, whether in sunny California, icy Arkansas or snowy Minnesota, be safe on the roadways.


*Names of all individuals involved, except Kim, have been changed to protect privacy.

© Copyright 2010 Audrey Kletscher Helbling