The Most Traumatic Event I Ever Witnessed

February 5, 2010

I was 17 and working at a Chief Auto Parts store in the High Desert.  It was located in a strip mall, next to an Albertsons grocery store. The entrance of the store was all glass like a typical retail store. That was my first ‘real’ job, where I had to clock in and out everyday to be paid bi-weekly with a real check.

It was a slow, sunny day.  My co-worker, Adam, and I were chatting, enjoying ourselves.  He answered the phone and began talking to a client.  I looked over at him and all of the sudden a shocked look came upon his face. He blurted out the words “I just saw a baby get run over.” I said, “What?” He repeated himself and also murmured the word “The truck ran over a baby.” He pointed outside to a big rig diesel truck that was parked at the end of the strip mall driveway. He got off the phone and called 911.

I walked outside and it was chaos.  Everything moved in slow motion.  People were running all around me, screaming. I turned to my right to see the big rig and the driver.  The driver was collapsed to his knees, covering his face with his hands and sobbing into them. I turned to my left and near by me was a man also kneeling on the floor.  However, he was holding his baby in his arms, crying and yelling out loud.  The baby’s body kind of flopped around in his arms and looked clean.  My mind wanted to believe the baby was alive. However, I glance to his right and laid next to him were the babies intestines strung along the pavement with blood.  I glanced back at the father and still tried to convince my mind the baby was dead.  A lady ran up to me screaming “Call 911, call 911.” I told her we did, she wouldn’t stop screaming.  I then looked to the left of the man and saw a lady sitting on a curb also sobbing and screaming.  She was the child’s mother.

I went back inside the store, Adam sat on the floor in shock.  I found our manager in the storage area and he couldn’t even go out into the front part of the store. He also had a brand new baby and couldn’t bare the thought of seeing the dead baby.  I was left to run the store for a bit until he was able to emerge.  The phone rang and I answered it.  The voice was a woman. She kept asking me what was wrong and asked if I was okay. I said “A baby was just run over by a semi diesel truck.” She said “Ohh that’s all?” and continued with question about her car.  Eventually, the cops showed up to interview everyone and make a report.  I hardly remembered the interview.

Apparently, the mother left her 3 month old baby in a shopping cart unattended to throw away a piece of trash.  The shopping cart was by a slope in the store entrance. These slopes are usually used for people in wheelchairs to enter a store.  The cart rolled down the slope and under the trucks right wheel.  The driver didn’t even know he hit anything, yet alone ran over a baby. He didn’t know a thing until people flagged him down and stopped him.  That’s when he fell out of the truck and onto his knees.  Adam actually saw the baby spin around the tire of the truck.  The truck shouldn’t have even been driving in the main part of the parking lot that day.  Usually, big rigs are only allowed to enter in the shipping areas of retails stores.  But the driver made a mistake that day and will haunt him for the rest of his life.

I was actually staying at my parents’ house at the time. I went home, told my family, cried for a bit and went to bed.  It took me a few weeks to not be affected by seeing young babies.  I still reflect back to that moment in time, when I’m feeling down about life.  The baby had no choice, the parents lost a child tragically, and the driver will forever live with the idea that he killed a baby on accident.  It was just an all around sad accident. (c)


One Response to “The Most Traumatic Event I Ever Witnessed”

  1. Gina Says:

    I remember that day…

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