moving forward

navigating through the life that was and moving into the life that is

Margot’s Story – Day One!

on November 7, 2011

Sandra, my niece, will celebrate her 30th birthday on Sunday November 13th.  Recently, she’s been doing her own blog about running.  She started running and has completed some 5k races.  On Saturday, November 5th, she and her husband, Glen, along with their two children – Alana, 6 and Cameron, 2 – were traveling to Calloway Gardens for Sandra to run her very first 10k race.  The plan was to run the race, celebrate with an awesome dinner, see the Christmas lights display and spend the night in the inn.

Although we don’t know the details, something caused them to stop at the Flat Shoals exit.  Again, not having all the fine points, we think that the other driver in the black van may have been attempting to pass a MARTA bus, crossing into the lane in which Glen was traveling.  The result was (we think) a head-on crash with the black van and the white one in which the Walker family was traveling.

The white van flipped, landing on its roof.  Alana and Cameron hung upside in their car seats.  Undoubtedly, the tall Sandra, and even taller Glen hit the roof, resulting in serious head injuries for both.  The children – perfect.  Cameron had a cut on the chin, Alana one on her hand.

And that’s what we know about that day, so far.  What happened next for me was a crazy, surreal blur.  I was planning to go see a movie – actually, I was trying to avoid grading papers, when the phone rang.  I answered with a cheery “Hello, Michelle!” thinking it was Michelle Walker, but it was actually, Michael, Glen’s brother.  He said he didn’t want to alarm me, but Grady had called to Sandra was there and had been in an accident.

I rushed to Grady, knowing Sandra was not alone in her vehicle.  Unfortunately, no one knew where Glen and the kids were.  Long story, short (ha ha), a nurse seeing my distress, took me back to ask if the woman on the stretcher in the trauma room was Sandra.  It was.  At least I knew where she was, and I knew she was alive.  But I was terrified by the blood coming from her ear (I’ve seen that on T.V. and know what it means…).  The good news – that’s why they call it “drama.”  T.V. isn’t always realistic.

I still knew nothing of Glen and the kids.  Those of you who know me understand my terror over the kids and their fate.  Someone at Grady made a list of hospital numbers for me.  By then, Michael and Michelle were there.  We took the list and started calling.  In the midst of the calls, my cell phone rang.  A wonderful social worker from Children’s Healthcare told me the news I needed to hear.  The children were at Eggleston, and they were okay.

I rushed to Eggleston, and I can not begin to describe what I felt when I opened the door and saw Alana and Cameron sitting on a stretcher watching a movie, balloons attached to each of their wrists, surrounded by boxes of apple juice and packages of graham crackers.  Cameron’s face lit up when he saw me, and Alana looked incredibly relieved.

The social worker who called also knew that Glen was at Atlanta Medical Center, so Michael and Michelle headed over there while Mehgan stayed with Sandy.  For these 3 individuals, there are not enough words to express my gratitude.

I was able to get the kids discharged and took them to my house.  We played games, watched a movie, ate spaghettios and, periodically discussed and drew pictures of the crash.  Both kids are doing a fantastic job of processing what happened.  Alana desperately wants to see Sandra.  She isn’t old enough, but we’re plotting to find a way.  Carrie and Ashley made a recording of Alana’s message to Sandra and played it for Sandra on Sunday.  I’m sure Sandra heard it and processed it.

My neighbor and dear friend, Amy made an emergency milk and bread run (since I wasn’t planning on little company).  Later, once the kids fell asleep, she came over so I could back to Grady.  Since Mehgan wasn’t next of kin, someone had to get her admitted, sign paperwork, claim her belongings, etc.  When I came home at about 1:30 in the morning, Amy was in bed with Alana, giving her the safety and comfort she needed.  I am indebted to her, and the list of amazing people is just beginning.

I am ending the day by crawling into bed and cuddling Alana, after checking on Cameron fast asleep in his pack-n-play.  I am still in shock, confused and unsure of what our lives will be like, but, finally, I sleep.


5 responses to “Margot’s Story – Day One!

  1. Jay Denslow says:

    Thank you so much for taking the time to share this with us. I know it must be difficult but we truly appreciate it.

    I have known Glen since high school and he is a dear friend of mine. One of the finest human beings I know. From the times I have met Sandra and the kids it was apparent Glen was extremely blessed to have met such a wonderful wife and have such beautiful kids.

    I cannot express how relieved I am to know that they are all pulling through this and will be reunited as a family. The outpouring of support from all Glen and Sandra’s family and friends is an inspiration to the rest of us to be as good a person as possible. Glen and Sandra have always set the standard and I am glad they will continue to be guides for the rest of us.

    Jay Denslow

  2. Josh Judd says:

    I cannot even begin to explain my relief of Alana and Cameron’s safety, the shier joy of progress of Glen and Sandra or the utter flood of emotions that have overcome me the past few days. I am so happy this blog was created for friends and family allowing for a central location of information and support. I have known Glen most of my life, met many people and am positive you will not find a better or more caring person than him. He is the kind of man you hope your son’s grows into and I know his parents are so proud. Sending all my love and prayers to Glen and Sandra, both their families and to friends from both sides. These two are fighters and will succeed, Let’s all keep the faith and continuing our support. A special thank you to Michelle Walker who has been keeping many people updated on Facebook for days, you have been so many people’s source of information on both for days and I am so appreciative!
    Looking forward to great progress today just like yesterday!

  3. Stephanie Horne says:

    Sending love and prayers to the entire family!

  4. Michelle Walker says:

    My story is similar to Margot’s but different. Mike got the call from Grady and we jumped in the car and sped to the hospital. I jumped out while he parked and found a very shaky Margot at the ER desk with news that she’d seen Sandra but still knew nothing about Glen and the kids. Once we learned where everyone was, we drove to Atlanta Medical Center and sat in the waiting room for more than an hour before learning Amy details about Glen. Finally, a doctor talked to us both in a private room to tell us the news of Glen’s injuries, which was scary and hard to hear. But the fact that he was alive was what I clung too – the body and good doctors can do the healing.

    They brought us back to see him and my heart broke mostly for Mike. Glen may be my brother in law, but he is my second brother and Sandra this sister I never had and always wanted. I wanted to stay strong for Mike but it was really difficult. The tears were flowing and some other family showed up. We cried together but were thankful he was alive 🙂

    The rest of the day was filled with family and friends coming to the hospital and learning the news. I went to be the family member with Sandra because her family was on the road driving down from Michigan and Margot was wig the kids. Meghan and I slept in the room with Sandra that night – meg in the chair and I on the floor. We stayed with her until her mom, dad and brother arrived. Thankfully, the nurses were so nice and let them go right back to see her upon their arrival even though it was shift change.

    I then came back to Glen’s hospital to be with Mike and see Glen. An overwhelming amount of love and support poured through the hospital and on Facebook with prayers. It is amazing to see how many people Glen has touched in his life. Truly amazing. Mike and I have slept in the hospital the last 2 nights and will probably continue to do so for a few more days.

    Yesterday was a very positive day and I am hoping for another one today!

    Michelle Walker

    • loribowen says:

      Michelle, I have only met you a couple of times, but you are a true angel, and Mike is blessed to have you as his wife. Thank you for the updates you have provided to all of Glen and Sandra’s friends and family members. You have kept me, and I’m sure many others, sane throughout this horrific ordeal. God Bless you and I hope to get to know you very well in the future. Love, Lori Bowen

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