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Hillside Angel

Two children trapped in a car that has flipped over a cliff are miraculously protected by guardian angels.

Guardian angels protect children

On school days Mom had our Chevy Suburban at her disposal. We needed room enough for us five kids, sacks of groceries and whatever supplies the animals required.

Our house in the Santa Barbara foothills sat on a high plateau with steep drop-offs front and back, reaching hundreds of feet down. We could see the entire city far below, but ours was like a place deep in the country. We had lots of animals running around—chickens, pigs and of course our dogs and cats.

One late afternoon we headed up the three-mile dirt road to our house. Mom had picked me up after my piano lesson, and my brothers after soccer practice. I was 11, Daniel was 12, and Alex was 9. We’d also stopped off at the feed store for bags of grain for our chickens.

“Quit bothering Chloe,” I said to 4-year-old Simon, scrunched in beside me. My baby sister was asleep in her car seat, but he liked to tickle the soft spot behind her ears. “You big kids unload the bags,” my mother said. She backed the car up to the chicken coop.

“Okay, let’s go,” Mom said. Chloe was still asleep in her car seat. Daniel, Alex and I climbed out, opened the rear door and started unloading the grain. I heard Simon scrambling around inside the car. Everything was turning rosy red in the sunset. “Dad will be home soon,” Mom said. “Let’s hurry so I can start dinner.” We were having my favorite, macaroni and cheese.

Thank you, God, I thought. Thank you for the best family in the world.

I set down a bag of grain and turned to help Daniel with another. The car started to pull away from us. “Mom, wait!” I yelled. “We’re not finished yet.” But Mom wasn’t in the driver’s seat! There was noise behind me in the chicken coop: Mom appeared, her face white with shock. The Suburban rolled toward the edge of the precipice. The sun dipped behind the mountains. The sky went dark. The car disappeared over the hill.

Simon and Chloe! My brothers and I ran to the edge. Mom scrambled down, her dress parachuting behind her. I couldn’t scream. I couldn’t speak. The Suburban turned over and the hood smashed against the ground. The front tires flew off. The car flipped again and again until it came to a crashing halt upright at the bottom of the hill. “I’m coming! I’m coming!” Mom cried.

Tears welled in my eyes. My legs were so weak that I could barely stand up, but my brothers and I ran down the dirt road. Mom stood by the car. Simon was at her side! “He’s alive!” Mom cried. She had pulled him through the shattered windshield. But my heart stopped. I could see Chloe’s car seat. It was still inside the car—empty.

Daniel knelt and held Simon. Mom tried to crawl through the shards of the rear window to search for Chloe. It was useless. My legs gave way, and I crumpled to my knees.

I bowed my head and prayed, but it was more with emotion than words. Simon was safe, but my baby sister could not have survived the accident without a miracle. I looked up. From my knees I could see under the Suburban. And I heard crying! Chloe! She lay in a hole in the ground just big enough to protect her.

Dad came home right away, and Mom drove Simon and Chloe to the hospital. We soon learned that the doctors in the emergency room were stupefied by my siblings. Simon had a scratch on his forehead, and Chloe a small cut on her shin. They came home with Band-Aids and a number to call in case of an emergency. A number that we never had to use.

I’ve heard people say they don’t believe in miracles. How else can I explain what happened that day? Simon was shielded from the accident, and Chloe was carried from the car on protecting angel wings.

Thank you, God, for the best family in the world—and for your angels, who hold us in their care.

Read more stories about heavenly angels and angels on earth.

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