On my way to O'Hare Airport this morning, traffic was backed up in the westbound lanes of 80/94 for a "gapers' block." I'd heard this on the traffic alert, but decided to go this way as my alternate route would be to go through downtown Chicago, which had its' own traffic issues because of the looting and rioting that took place overnight. But, that is another story.
So, back to 80/94. Sure enough, the slowdown occurred right at Kennedy like they said. It was clear the eastbound lanes were shut down because there was no traffic. As I approached Torrance Avenue, I could see the accident scene. It was horrific. It's not clear exactly what happened, but a semi tractor was involved and the driver side was smashed in and the windshield shattered. There was a large pickup off on the shoulder with pretty bad front end damage as well. Then, there were two cars in the middle of the four lanes completely destroyed. There was debris across all four lanes for at least 100 yards. And, then, I noticed in the middle of the wreckage, a body covered up lying on the roadway. The news had reported it was a double fatality.
Even just driving by that scene for a minute....two minutes...I was shook to the core, imagining the noise, force, destruction that may have taken only 5 or 10 seconds....and then, eerie silence. I tried to imagine what could have taken place in the seconds leading up to the crash. Was someone texting, driving recklessly, having a medical issue, wanting to die that day? A split second decision may have changed the outcome...or not. Whatever happened, two people left home this morning and are not coming back. My heart grieved for the unknown family members getting that unwelcome call or knock on the door.
Life can change in an instant and so unexpectedly. Be present in your life, pay attention, and love your family and friends like there is no tomorrow.
As I drove on, I totally had the Boss in my head...
Wreck on the Highway