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Lifestyle & Human Interest

Family Roadtrip Takes Horrific Turn When Mom and Son Watch 'Fatigued' Driver Crash Into Dad Driving in Front of Them

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On May 20, the Marr family was headed to a new life, setting out from Colorado to Wyoming for the closing of their new home. As they drove through Wyoming, nearing their destination, a Ford F-250 crossed over and hit Mike Marr head-on.

“The driver of the Ford has been identified as 75-year-old Casper, Wyoming resident Stephen James Stewart,” a police report from the Wyoming Highway Patrol stated. “Stewart was wearing a seatbelt and succumbed to his injuries at the scene of the crash.

“The driver of the Dodge has been identified as 32-year-old Greeley, Colorado resident Michael Andrew Marr. Marr was wearing a seatbelt and was flown by helicopter to the Wyoming Medical Center for injuries sustained in the crash.”

In a GoFundMe set up for the family, organizer Wendy Coppersmith wrote how quickly everything happened.

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“Mike and the girls were driving in the family truck pulling another car on a trailer,” the page read. “Hillary and her son were following. In a split second their lives were changed.”

People pulled together to help the family. One passing family stopped and drove with Hillary to the hospital. The tow truck driver offered to watch their dogs, who were with them and clearly couldn’t go to the hospital.

Just like that, the family was put on a very different trajectory. The following day, Hillary posted on Facebook to update people on their status.

“I can’t even describe how it feels to watch your family go through such a tragic accident and feel so helpless as it all happens,” she wrote. “There were angels covering the girls, who are walking away with some achyness and bruising, and Addison has some stitches and staples.

“I fortunately was able think clear enough while watching to get my car safely in to the ditch, or the other car would have landed on top of Jameson and I. Mike took most of the hit, when I left the ICU at 10:30 they had attached a monitor to his brain, and were getting ready to do a central line. They said they may try to lighten some of the sedation this morning to see how he reacts, and they were still waiting on the images from X-ray.”

Both girls were released from the hospital the same night, and have been able to stay with relatives while Hillary is with Mike, but Mike has been having the fight of his life.

On May 21, an update to the GoFundMe said that he was in “critical but stable condition,” and another update said that “Monday was a good day for Mike.” But he has a very long way to go.

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Many people have very kindly started to send the girls items off an Amazon wish list, and Hillary provided an update on them for friends, family and followers. Both are healing well, Addison will soon get her remaining stitches, and both will start therapy soon. McKenna, especially, has been dealing with PTSD.

“I was also told several times that the girls car seats absolutely saved their lives, so keep those big kids in their seats!” Hillary added in her initial post.

A family friend also picked up the dogs from the tow truck driver and they are being cared for — a small but critical detail that will help Hillary focus on what’s important.

“The reality currently is Mike is in a coma,” Hillary wrote on Sunday. “We don’t know really anything about how he will be affected by this. We are hopeful and fighting for his life. He as well is a fighter and fighting for his life.

“Their are so many people that are praying for our family. By the numbers of people who have viewed our Facebook post over 200,000 people our praying for Mike and our family. We are feeling these prayers. Keep praying and keep battling! We will not give up!

“Today was emotional, stressful, sad, angry, all the emotions….. but we will hold on to our hope and hold on to Jesus who is holding Mike in the palm of his hands.”

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking