Journal writer credits God and a knife for his lack of injuries

By Dixon Cartwright

GILMER, Texas--A truck careened off The Journal's assistant editor, Mac Overton, in a car-pedestrian accident here Dec. 20, but he escaped with minor injuries.

Mac Overton, a Big Sandy resident and Church of God member whose full-time job is editing the weekly Gilmer Mirror, suffered bruises but no permanent injury, even though his impact with the vehicle left a sizable dent in its hood.

The incident took place in the parking lot of the post office in Gilmer, seat of Upshur County.

"I was on my way on foot to get the mail for the company where I work during the day," Mr. Overton said.

Out of the corner of his eye he noticed a full-sized white pickup truck back out of a parking place, then begin rapidly accelerating forward.

"I assumed that the driver would pull up close to me, then stop."

Instead, the vehicle accelerated until it slammed into Mr. Overton, hurtling him airborne. He landed three or four feet in front of the vehicle. The driver later said he stopped because he heard the impact, otherwise he probably would have run over Mr. Overton.

"The driver immediately got out and very apologetically said that he had not seen me," said Mr. Overton. "He stopped because he heard his truck hit something."

Mr. Overton later heard that the driver suffers from a degenerative eye disease that left him with several blind spots in his field of vision.

"Unfortunately that morning I was in one of those blind spots."

Mr. Overton visited a hospital emergency room for examination and X rays, which turned up no broken bones.

"In analyzing the accident," he concluded, "apparently several factors worked to my advantage. It's one time that being 20 pounds overweight was actually an advantage. The doctor who examined me told me my injuries would have been much more severe had I been of recommended weight or skinny."

On his right hip he was wearing a sheathed folding hunting knife he had bought at a gun show 10 days earlier.

"It is five inches long, closed, and was riding alongside my right hip joint when the accident occurred," said Mr. Overton. "It is a folding hunter with heavy bolsters at one end and handles made of a tough synthetic that was molded to look like staghorn, but much tougher.

"It is branded Rigid, which is a trademark of United Cutlery, but I can tell it was made for them private-labeled in the Camillus Cutlery Co. factory in Camillus, N.Y." The knife's design "is a style copied from the famous Remington Bullet folding hunter, made during the 1920s and 1930s. It's on my hip right now."

Mr. Overton, who collects knives and is a consultant to knife manufacturers and sellers, said the impact of the pickup hitting him was distributed across the five-inch-wide span of the knife. "Otherwise it would have hit right on my hip joint and probably would have shattered my hip and pelvis."

He thinks he could easily have died in the mishap but escaped relatively unscathed thanks to the grace of God and the knife.

"I feel very humbled and very blessed by this. I can only conclude that God still has a use for me."

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