Our White Light of Protection

Angels on Earth|March/April 2020

Our White Light of Protection
The car brakes couldn’t save us. But something else did.


Mom pulled the big sedan onto the mountain road, scenic Blue Ridge Parkway. From my seat in the back I gazed up at the pines that towered over us. The cliffs seemed to go straight up, higher than I could even make out through the window. We had been driving for nearly three hours, heading back to Florida from a family camping trip in Williamsburg, Virginia.

I looked back at the pop­up trailer we were pulling behind us, our home for the past two weeks. It had been a tight fit for the six of us— my mom and dad, my teenage brother Alfred, me and my two young daughters, Dawn and Katrina. But we’d managed. The cozy confines had even brought us closer together. We were all experienced campers and hikers—even my girls—so sleeping bags and cooking by an open fire came with the territory. I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.

I put my arm around four­year­ old Katrina and held her against me. Dawn, six, was next to her, and be­ side her was Alfred. The only disap­pointment had been that my hus­ band wasn’t able to make the trip. He was a firefighter and hadn’t been able to take off work.

“What was your favorite thing we did?” I asked the kids.

“I liked seeing all the old­fashioned clothes,” Dawn said. “And making s’mores on the fire.”

“I liked the stockade,” Alfred added. “Though I’m glad we weren’t really arrested.”

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March/April 2020