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Most people are quick to agree that "trials make the person." I have had more than enough trials, to know God is with me.

My mom, dad and I were driving to a family funeral through Stevens Pass, to Wenatchee, Washington, when I lost control of the car and spun circles into oncoming traffic. My father, Petar, died instantly, in my arms, pinning me to the driver’s seat. Everything was white and I couldn’t understand why I could see shapes and genders of people, but not in colour. My mother, Maria (Imexosem TleqtamethWalks Tall) and I shared the ambulance together to the hospital in west Wenatchee. She later died in surgery.

My surgeon kept saying over and over again, “Why isn’t her (me) back broken?” as she read the X-ray with disbelief. As a child I had an early diagnosis of Idiopathic Scoliosis, and had surgery at 13, when I had two Harrington rods placed to try and straighten my back. The surgery did not make my back straight but keeps it from getting worse. I had lived my whole childhood, wondering why God hated me so much to give me this disease, and the arthritis from which I now suffer.

I've lived every day with the curse of Scoliosis. Until February 8, 2023 at 8:34am.

Those rods saved my life. God saved me from dying in that car accident. My WHOLE LIFE had led up to that day, place and time. My rods are no longer a curse, they are a blessing. God was truly with me that day!

Mom and dad’s dog, Augi, was in the car with us, and he survived without a scratch. A passerby took Augi home with them, fed him, and took care of him until I was able to collect him the next day. I was discharged from the hospital, like Lazarus coming out of the tomb, naked. I was wearing paper clothes since mine had been cut off me because of the accident. My cousins were having the funeral for their father and they took care of me, fed me, and dressed me. My father’s younger brother, Nick and his wife Yuriko were at the funeral for my Great-Uncle Mike, and they happily drove me and Augi home! Augi has found his forever home, with a dear friend of mine from the Parish of St. Cuthbert, Delta, Rassamee and her family. Augi is a blessed addition to their family.

Every day I live now is a blessing, that God has given to me, to be a beacon of light to others!


All my relations,

Beth Fortin


Beth's late parents - Petar and Maria (Imexosem Tleqtameth)