Pastor and wife who lost both children in tragic car accident God helped us to forgive

A Christian couple whose two young children were killed in a car accident in May have said they’ve had to “learn how to do things differently”, but still have faith in God.

“We have to learn how to do things differently. We can’t just plow through,” Gentry Eddings, told WRAL. A worship leader at one of Charlotte’s biggest churches, Forest Hills, Gentry was driving back from his sister’s wedding on May 23 when his car was struck by a truck driver at traffic lights. His car then hit his wife Hadley’s, killing their two-year-old son Dobbs.

Hadley was eight months pregnant at the time. Their son, Reed, was born by emergency C-section, but also died three days later.

In the days following the accident, the Eddings said that they had already forgiven the driver of the truck, 28-year-old Matthew Deans. “We have, in our hearts, forgiven the man who did this. It was not the easiest thing to do, but in some ways it was because we know – Hadley and I – that Jesus Christ has forgiven us our debt… So in some ways, it was very easy to forgive a man who made an accident,” Gentry said at their children’s funeral.

He asked those present to also forgive Deans, and “anyone in your life who you hold anything against”.

Speaking to WRAL, the Eddings repeated this sentiment, saying that Deans must already be devastated enough. “I do get mad but I don’t know who to be mad at. I am just mad that this happened,” Hadley said.

“All I can think of is that I have driven distracted before.”

“I remember being there in the hospital in the first 24 hours, I didn’t even know the driver’s name then,” Gentry added. “I was trying to figure out all my own emotions. I didn’t know if I’d be able to forgive this guy and I asked God for help. I said, ‘God, you know how’.”

Hadley said the family is still grieving, and can’t pretend to be perfect in the midst of tragedy. “We cry a lot. I don’t want people to think we’re great, you know ‘God is good, we’re great we’re happy.’ That’s not what it’s like, you know?

“God is good and we know that but we are sad, we’re mad, we’re scared, we’re frustrated. There’s a million emotions just all at once sometimes.”

Asked about how they cope with having survived the devastating incident, Hadley added: “The only thing I can think of is that if God left us here, he must just not be finished with us. That’s the only thing I can think”.