Blow out on
Rainbow Bridge by: France
Westbound approach to Rainbow Bridge in
Orange County, Texas
. Veterans Memorial Bridge is on
Bridge is a
cantilever bridge crossing the
Neches River in
Southeast Texas (29.9805 -93.8703) just upstream from
Sabine Lake. It allows
State Highway 87 and
State Highway 73 to connect
Port Arthur in
Jefferson County on the southwest bank of the river with
Bridge City in
Orange County on the northeast bank.
Construction on the bridge began in
the guidance of the
Texas State Highway Department. Due to concerns by the upstream city
Beaumont about the bridge posing a threat to ship navigation, the
Rainbow Bridge was built with a 680 foot (210 m) main span. In addition,
it has a vertical clearance of 177 feet (54 m),
which was intended to allow the tallest ship in the
US Navy, the
USS Patoka, passage under the bridge (however, the Patoka
The bridge was completed on
September 8, 1938. The nearby town of Prairie View took on the name
"Bridge City" in response. Initially named the
Bridge, it received its current name in 1957. The bridge was listed in
National Register of Historic Places in 1996.
In the summer of 1963 5
college classmates and I went to a drive in movie in Bridge City. Since we
had to cross Rainbow Bridge (more than 45 degree incline up & down), I was asked
to drive because everyone else was afraid to drive across the bridge.
By the time the movie was
over, a heavy fog had rolled in. It was so foggy I had a hard time seeing.
Just as I topped the bridge, we had a blowout. I knew I could not touch
the brake and had to coast down the bridge. I geared down to second gear
and that helped slow the down hill momentum and prayed there was no one in front
As soon as we were off the
bridge, I pulled over so we could change the tire. As we were taking the
tire out of the trunk, a car pulled over behind us. The man offered to
change the tire.
After he changed the tire,
we were thanking him. He asked if we would do a favor for him, "Will you
please pray for my son and the rest of his scout troop (5 - 6 year olds) who are
lost in the fog in the ship channel?"
We could not believe he had
stopped to help 6 girls when his son was missing.
When we got back in the
car, we held hands and with tears running down our cheeks, we prayed that God
would keep the children safe and return them to their parents quickly.
We had never seen such an
example of kindness, goodness & self-control. This man was an example of
what a Christian act is. In the face of what could be the greatest loss in
his life, he did what God would have him do help girls change a tire. He
was concerned that a not so nice man would stop to help us.
I still get all emotional
when I think of how he sacrificed his time to help us when he was hurting.
I don't know his name; but God does. I pray he will always be blessed.
Rom 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore,
brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living
sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And
do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your
mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect
will of God.
Heb 13:16 But do not forget to do good and
to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
(The children were found safe)
On My Own
I've Seen & Heard of Jesus