This past May, Charlotte, NC parents Gentry and Hadley Eddings lived every parent’s worst nightmare when they were involved in a car wreck. Their 2-year-old son, Dobbs was killed instantly. Hadley, then 8 months pregnant with another son, Reed, was rushed to the hospital and had to give birth to Reed early as a result of the crash. Baby Reed died in the hospital three days later.
The crash which took the boys’ lives was caused when a box truck, driven by 28-year-old Matthew Deans was approaching stopped traffic and failed to stop in time. Deans pled guilty earlier this week to 2 counts of involuntary manslaughter. Toxicology reports showed he had been using drugs before the accident.
In a stunning statement that can only be an act of God, Gentry Eddings, a worship pastor at a church in Charlotte, had this to say to the man who took his son’s lives in court:
“…we know it was not your intention for them to die. That’s important. Mistakes were made. I sincerely forgive you. Ultimately, we would pray we see you in heaven. We want you there. Our sons would want you there.”
He also said he hopes Deans will improve his life, and told a local television station, “God has our boys in a place of peace, so I am in a place of peace. God has a plan. The situation is a frustrating one. We don’t want to be here. We don’t like it. This is not a fun situation. We’re mad at the loss. But we know God is good and has a plan and we believe that.”
I honestly can’t even read Eddings’ words without tears. I can’t imagine being in their situation, having two empty bedrooms at home that are supposed to be holding two little boys, and still offering forgiveness. But I know that the Eddings can forgive because God has forgiven their sins and they have the power of Jesus’ love in their lives. I will be praying for this sweet mom and dad. If you would like to honor the memory of Dobbs and Reed, Gentry and Hadley ask that you help make the legacy of their sons be used to help a Haiti mission where they Gentry and Hadley have both served. Just go to mohhaiti.org.
“Mission of Hope Haiti” works to transform Haiti through various projects including orphan care, education, health care, nutrition, church advancement and empowerment programs for women.