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Adventures of Ron Huckleberry...#25 Mom wrecks the Hudson
Ron’s dad had died two months earlier and this is the first visit that Ron, his mom and his six year old sister had made to see his grandmother, granddaddy, Aunt Jane and Aunt Anne. It was his sister’s birthday and there were some presents for her as well as gifts for all the family.
The weather was a bit rainy, but nice. Mom had an extra day off work and we were really in the mood to visit Grandmother. Mom is a very good driver and it’s always nice to travel in the Hudson because it’s so roomy and comfortable. The trip from Huntsville to Little Town takes about two hours. Mom insures that Ron and littler sister have plenty of games to keep themselves occupied.
For some reason, as they drove, Ron was kind of talking to himself, “I remember going with Dad to buy the Hudson and he only lived for about one and a half years to enjoy it”.
Ron, Mom and sis had a wonderful time visiting with Granddaddy, Grandmother, Auntie Jane and Auntie Anne. Grandmother was depressed and worried about Granddaddy. He was not himself. He wasn’t unfriendly, but he didn’t want to talk. He just sat in the rocker looking out of the window. When any of us tried to talk with him he just started crying.
Auntie Anne worked in Nashville and had an apartment there, but she most often spent Saturday night with Grandmother and Granddaddy. There is only one extra room with a large double bed. Since Ron’s mom and sister were visiting, they needed a place to sleep, so Auntie Anne spent this Saturday night with Auntie Jane.
When Ron spent the summer with Grandmother, he looked forward to Saturday night, so he could sleep with Auntie Anne. She always tickled his back for a long time.
Like any fun trip, visit or vacation, the time just flies by too fast. We all had so much fun.
A couple of hours before Ron’s mom planned to depart for home, the weather changed and a bad rain storm moved in. Grandmother wanted us to stay another night, but Mon
explained that she needed to be back at work the next morning.
Everyone had an umbrella as they rushed to the car. Mom insured everyone that the wipers were working fine and that she would drive slowly and carefully. It was dark when we left Grandmother’s and it was raining quite heavily. As Mom drove off we could see them all standing near the highway waving to us.
It never stopped raining, but the trip towards home was fun. Mom drove slowly and Sis and Ron stood behind the front seat and near Mom’s shoulder.
We all saw this big truck coming straight for us and on our side of the road… Ron screamed, “Mother! Watch out”. Mom instantly swerved to the right just in time to avoid a crash. As Mom swerved to the right the car naturally went off the pavement and onto the g ravel side. When Mom attempted to straighten up, the rear of the car slipped off the gravel into the ditch.
A policeman later told Mom that she had done the right thing when she steered back to the right as if she was in snow. The car did straighten up on the gravel and all looked as if w e might be alright. However, when Mom attempted to drive back onto the payment she lost control. The payment was a good five inches higher that the gravel. The front left wheel balked; jerking the steering wheel loose from Mom’s hands.
The car then swerved again to the right and this time into the ditch, where it genteelly turned over onto its left side.
Ron had been standing directly behind Mom’s right shoulder. Ron was now lying on the left inside of the car, which was against the dirt. It was dark. Nothing seemed to happen for a few moments. Then Mom began screaming, “Ron…Sandra, are you two alright”?
We both let her know we were OK. Sandra was then standing on top of Ron. Suddenly there were people everywhere. Several were on top of the car; which was really the right side of the car. They were all looking in the windows with flashlights.
Someone screamed, “Get them out quickly, there is gas leaking on the motor. This car can blow up any minute”.
Quickly someone had the front right door open. This was atop Mom. Mom was temporarily stuck under the left side of the steering wheel. A man was quickly inside the car and managed to pull Mom loose. He and others soon had her pulled out of the door.
Again someone is yelling, “Hurry before the car starts burning”. At that moment someone was pulling Sis out of the car.
Mom was screaming for Ron to climb out quickly. Ron screamed that he couldn’t move because his back is broken. For a few moments everything was very quiet. Ron was thinking the car must be on fire and he was being left in the car to burn up.
Finally the man crawled from the front seat to the back seat area and was straddling Ron.
“Where on your back do you have pain”?
Ron explained that it didn’t hurt, But that it was broken because he can’t move. The man gently pulls and pushes Ron, but can not get him freed. He yells for a knife. Very quickly another man hands him a knife. Very quickly the man begins to cut the seat cover cord, which had in some way got tangled with Ron’s belt. In a short moment Ron was loose and being helped through the window onto the side of the car.
Ron had a strange feeling as he sat on the side of the car and felt that he was on the car’s top, yet the ground was so far down. A man then handed Ron down to waiting arms and was quickly taken away from the car.
In the next moment Ron felt that he was being strangled as Mom hugged, squeezed and kissed him. She held Sis in one arm and Ron in the other and would not let loose of either.
The accident had happened on the outskirt of Huntsville. An ambulance and police car had already arrived. The three of them were carefully examined, but the ambulance soon left after Mom assured them that no one was injured.
The policeman was a neighbor and friend of the family. He and Mom talked for awhile. Later he drove the three of them home in the patrol car. Ron had recovered and was now begging the policeman to turn the siren on. The policeman smiled and gave Ron a ten second present.
Our next door neighbor had a repair garage and it was he that picked the car up.
As soon as they were home Mom phoned Grandmother to explain what had happened and assured everyone that no one was hurt.
Mom naturally took the next morning off. Around ten a.m. Mom, Ron and Sis were on the way to the garage to look at their damaged black beauty. The insurance adjuster had completed his report and the police had made more pictures.
The garage attendants had already washed the car. No one could believe what minor damage the car had suffered. Of course it needed a complete paint job, but not too much body repair.
There had been many witnesses to the truck driver’s reckless driving. He had been stopped and arrested about ten miles down the road from Mom’s accident scene. The driver was drunk. He stated that he and his girl friend had an argument and that he had stopped at a dance hall and had a few d rinks before continuing his trip.
He was driving a huge trailer truck that hauled cars. The trailer was empty, the driver was speeding and the trailer was swerving from lane to lane as he drove. The evening newspaper reported that that truck and trailer had side s wiped twenty cars before the police stopped the driver.
Any accident is bad, but for sure Ron, Mom and Sis were very lucky.
© GENE HUDGENS
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