Gene and I were married on December 24, 1967, in Las Vegas, NV. We eloped. I had grown up in an
Alcoholic family. Daddy drank breakfast, lunch and dinner but he was able to hold down a job. His drug
of choice was beer except when we were living in El Paso, TX when he could get 'hard' stuff inexpensively.
Gene grew up with his grandparents, and his mother. His father walked out on the family when he was three.
He had two brothers, and two sisters plus four cousins in the family. Early in our marriage we went to a
church near our home and were finally asked to leave because Gene didn't have a suit and we couldn't
Now it is 1972. We, now, have the perfect family. We have been married for 4.5 years and had four children.
His Two, Tina who was 8.5, Gene, Jr., was 7.5. And our two Chelle who was 3.5 and Michael 9 months.
Tina and Gene, Jr., took vacation Bible school at the Baptist church but Chelle wasn't old enough. She was
however old enough to go to Central Christians VBS. She came home the first day singing Jesus loves me.
I went to the program at the end but Gene wouldn't go. I felt Jesus for the first time. It took a month for our
friends and I to talk Gene into going but he finally went. We went every week after that. On September 17,
1972, we went forward and accepted Jesus as our Savior. On September 24, we were baptized in water.
And then. . .
It was Saturday, September 30, 1972. Gene was at work. At that time he drove a delivery truck for Sears.
Tina and Gene, Jr., out riding bicycles when Chelle asked to go to see if Matt could play. I watched for cars
and watched her walk down to Matt's house. When I saw her knock on the door I went back inside. Right
away she came back and said "no one answered the door. I called Linda, Matt's Mom and she hadn't heard
the door. Chelle was sitting on the sofa. Linda and I chatted for a while.
The next thing I remember is Jeff (8) a neighbor boy coming to the door. The screen was closed but the door
was open because it was a beautiful autumn day. Jeff said, "Mrs. Cook, your little girl has been hit by a car." I
hung up the phone, I think, left my 12 month old son in the house by himself and ran outside. There was Chelle,
laying in the street, unconscious. She had blood running from her left ear. Shortly an ambulance arrived and took
us to the hospital. They left me in the waiting room and wouldn't let me see her. I sat there for at least two
eternity's, maybe longer.
They came out and took me into a room where a Doctor came in and said, "Her brain died instantly." Then turned
and walked out. After that I don't remember much. I screamed for a long time, I do remember that. I remember
calling my Mom, and Gene coming in. But there we were, we had been saved for 13 days and our world collapsed.
That afternoon people from church, and the neighborhood came over and kept telling us things like, "We don't know
why God does these things but... "Maybe He is saving her from something worse later. Blah! blah! blah!
Finally everyone left but Gene and I. The other children were taken care of by some neighbors, Gene went to take a
shower and I went into the other bathroom and took a bath. While in the bath I cursed God. I don't remember what
I said now, God is so good that He erased the tape and I don't know what I said except that I complained loudly
about His taking Chelle from us. Then He came into the bathroom, I didn't see Him, but I did feel Him. He picked
me up and held me for a long time. I could really feel His love.
Now I was very confused. How could God love me that way in the evening after He had hurt me so much in
the morning? I hunted in the Word and it took a very long time but I finally found John 10:10 in which Jesus is
speaking: The enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy; but I come to bring life and bring it more abundantly. This is
now my scripture. I know who hurt me and why. It was satan, and he wanted me to turn my back on the Lord.
But he lost. Hallelujah!!!
After a couple has had a child die, the statistics are very high that the marriage falls apart. satan did try, but I got
down on me knees and asked God to change everything that needed to be changed, me included. And of course
He did. Our marriage is wonderful now. We have been married 32 years and have Eleven Grandchildren. I also
have an Internet daughter and other young women who enjoy writing to me and I love to hear from them. So I have
more 'daughters' than I could believe possible. God is so Good!