“Today has been the worst day of my life! No parent should have to bury their child…”
A Utah dads inspiring words are going viral in the midst of a devastating loss. After his son Simon Olsen and his girlfriend, Hailie Godfrey, both 18, were killed in a head-on collision,Lane Olsen took to Facebook to express his grief over his loss. But he also had some surprising words for the driver of the car that killed the teens, Tanner Evans, who walked away from the crash withinjuries that are not life-threatening. Olsens Facebook post has since been shared nearly 3,000 times since it was posted.It reads:
Today has been the worst day of my life! No parent should have to bury their child.
As a family our hearts go out to Tanner Evans, who was the driver that killed my son Simon and his girlfriend Hailie.
What is crazy about this accident is that we know their family very well, his father was my Assistant basketball coach for AAU, we coached together for 5 years and former bishop. Tanners older son played on the High School team with my son Chandler and they were best friends.
With Tanner coming home last week from his mission we cant imagine the guilt and pain he is feeling. We hold no hard feelings and we love that family!
I spoke to his father Matt, and he says that he is devastated and their family is feeling the same pain and sadness.
I am so proud of my children. When my son Chandler Olsen found out who the driver was, he wanted to drive over and tell the family that we forgive them and have no hard feelings. My daughter Lexi Sparks posted on her FB wall to pray for him and his family. Gehrig Olsen is not angry either.
This is what Simon would of wanted, he loved everyone and would want everyone to be laughing and have no anger.
Im sure Simon would say Guys relax I will you see all very soon, Im skydiving in Heaven and practicing my basketball skills
Im humbled by the power of forgiveness for this is the only way to heal and move forward.
We used many of the organs in his body, which will affect 30 people. Simon would of liked knowing he helped others in need.
Please pray for all of us and especially the Evans family. This is not easy for any of us, but through God and faith we will get through this most trying time in our lives.
The outreach and love extended to our family has been overwhelming, we have had so many friends and family visit, call from all over the world and hundreds of texts and FB posts. We feel the power of your thoughts and prayers.
It is by this power that we are getting through this most challenging time. We appreciate those that have also donated in Simons behalf, your generosity is greatly appreciated.
Some people say that there is no God, others say we will not have an afterlife.
But I CHOOSE to BELIEVE, I CHOOSE to be HAPPY, I CHOOSE to live my life through my son. And I CHOOSE one day to embrace my son and cry tears of joy.
We love you all!
Photo: Utah County Sherriffs department
Expressing total forgiveness for Tanner Evans and no ill-will toward his family as what his son would have wanted, Olsens message is a powerful one of LOVE in the midst of loss and tragedy. When he has every reason to hate, to scream and yell, to be angry, he says, ICHOOSE to BELIEVE, I CHOOSE to be HAPPY, I CHOOSE to live my life through my son. And I CHOOSE one day to embrace my son and cry tears of joy.
A few days later, Lane shared another touching Facebook post that detailed the Christ-like example his son Simon lived in his brief 18yearson this earth:
Simons final resting place. The brand new Mapleton Cemetery. Just a short walk from where I grew up as a child. And Simons favorite place to visit. With Maple Mountain in the background.
He would beg me to go to his Grandparents every Sunday.
I just love the sculpture in the middle. It Reminds me of the resurrection with Christ pulling my sons hand out of the grave.
I heard incredible stories from Simons friends and those that new him this past week.
I want to share two stories of my sons life, that I think exemplifies his Christ Like example.
1. A mother and daughter showed up to the viewing, and both were crying uncontrollably, after 5 minutes. The daughter told me this story. ” I only met Simon twice at Riverton High School, He found out that I was suicidal and was planning on committing suicide.
I also told him another friend was going to do it with me, the next day Simon came to school and gave me two American Eagle Silver coins. He said any time you think of committing suicide, hold on to the coin and don’t do it, he asked if I would give the other coin to my friend”
Every Christmas I would give my children each one American Eagle Silver Coin…
The mother goes your son saved my daughters life, and hugged me and wouldn’t let go. The girl said ever since that day she stopped thinking about killing herself.
They gave me the coin that he had given her, and they went and found the 50 cent piece for the day he was born
2. A man from Springville, Utah had read our families post in the newspaper how we had forgiven the driver, because that is what Simon would of wanted.
This man showed up to the viewing 15 minutes before and asked if I was Simons father, he started to cry and gave me and my kids hugs.
He said 31 years ago he accidentally killed a 7 year old little boy in his truck, he said a day doesn’t go by that he doesn’t think of this.
That every time he hits a bump in a road or a pothole, he shakes thinking he hit some child again.
He said I don’t’ know your family, but I wanted to be part of the service knowing how you forgive others. He said that this had brought some healing to his heart and it brought comfort to ours.
I was weeping from both of these stories!
I am so proud to have been his Father, I am proud to have been his Friend, and I am grateful to God that I was able to raise him and he became part of our family.
I love you my beautiful son…..
I can only hope and pray that the Olsen familys example of forgiveness will help Tanner Evans to be able to go on with his life in a positive way after being involved in such a tragedy. If only we could all forgive each hurt we sufferfrom small to devastatingly hugeas the Olsens have done, this world would be SUCH a better place.
Our prayers are with the Olsens, the Godfreys and the Evanses during this difficult time.
Originally found athttp://www.faithit.com