On Friday, February 9th, 2007, Chris Williams and his family were returning from dinner when Chris, in the driver's seat, saw a pair of headlights advancing towards him at a startling speed. "So as I tried to do some maneuvers to get out of the way, it was too late." The oncoming car, driven by an intoxicated teenager, slammed into theirs, forever changing the lives of both parties involved. As a result of the gruesome accident, four lives were lost - Chris' wife and their unborn fifth child, his second oldest son Benjamin, and his only daughter Anna. Chris, his son Sam, and Cameron White, the drunk driver, all survived. But nothing would ever be the same for any of them.
James F. Wood, a good friend of Chris', arrived at the hospital shortly after the accident to check on him and his son. He noted that the first thing Chris said was, "How is the young man who was driving the car?" As one would expect, Chris had a tremendously difficult time coping with the aftermath of the accident and a life without the family he once had. During these dark times, Chris looked to God and his Son, Jesus Christ, for guidance, "When I did feel anger, or there was just a deep sense of loneliness, I didn't direct that at the person that had caused this, it directed itself at the Savior."
In order to gain some sort of closure, Chris sought to meet Cameron, the one responsible for this life-altering event. He didn't intend to yell at him or berate him, or guilt him. He wanted Cameron to move on as well. "There's no way to explain it. It's an overwhelming feeling of thankfulness, gratefulness, strength," Cameron explained.
"The thought and sentiment I expressed as I sat down with Cameron was simply this, that if through the forgiveness or through anything else he had seen or heard about me doing after the accident, that he should know it was merely the Savior working through me," Chris said, "I had merely put myself in a position to be a vessel..."
Chris' forgiveness of Cameron can serve as a lesson to us all. The video below takes an in-depth look at their encounter and the words they shared. It's a chilling tale that spreads a good message about forgiveness and moving on, all the while honoring and remembering those who have passed on.