On September 1, 2012, we lost a precious member of our family.
Drake Walker drowned during a flash flood near his home in Conway.
Our family will never be the same.
For us the call came as we were with friends watching the first Razorback game of the season. Scottie got a phone call that Drake had been missing for over an hour. We immediately turned to social media to get the word out for everyone we knew to start praying. The next phone call came that the police were dragging a nearby pond. The final phone call was that he had been found in the pond and had drowned. There are no words to describe the emotions that came as we dashed out of our friends' house and started to think about what to do next. I have never experienced anything like it before. Henry was staying at a friend's house. I called my parents and told them. They were on their way to get baby A. We started packing. I knew we had to tell Henry so I went to his friend's house and told him something had happened and we had to go home. Telling Henry that his cousin and best friend was gone was the most difficult thing we have ever had to tell him. To say Henry and Drake were close doesn't tell the full story. They were like brothers.
We arrived in Conway just after midnight to our sweet family standing on the porch and immediately began hugging and crying. There simply were no words. I remember just saying "I'm sorry" over and over. The house was full of people. Over the next several days we were able to witness the church being the hands and feet of Jesus as pastors and small group members took care of every detail imaginable. They kept ice chests full of cold drinks and food supplied. There were tissue boxes all over the house. There were ladies cleaning and doing laundry. There were tables and chairs and canopies set up on the deck for people to sit. There were plenty of people around from early morning until late at night for hugs, tears, prayer, support. It was an amazing scene in the midst of a terrible situation.
Drake's legacy lives on through a mission fund set up at his church. Through this fund, his family will be going to Haiti next summer to share the gospel. His legacy lives on in schools throughout Arkansas as students strive to be the friend Drake was. He was nice to everyone and took the time to make everyone feel accepted. He stood up to bullies. He welcomed new kids as friends. His legacy lives on in the lives that have been changed as a result of his story and his family's testimony. We know hundreds of students have accepted Christ of their savior in the month of September. This month of tragedy has also been a month of blessings. Drake's legacy lives on in his family and friends who strive every day to live each day to the fullest. Drake loved life and we owe it to him to do the same.
Drake's story is a reminder to all of us that we are not promised tomorrow. Life is so short and we often take so much for granted. May God change this attitude in us. May God make us more aware of how precious life is. May we live differently.
Drake loved this song by Building 429 and this has become his anthem. I am so thankful to have know Drake Walker and to have called him my nephew. I miss him dearly and I cannot wait to see him again in heaven one day.
Please pray for my sweet family and they grieve and seek God's plan in their new normal as a family of three. I have witnessed them praising God in the midst of terrible tragedy and I know God is with them supplying their every need. We believe God has plans beyond what we can comprehend through this amazing family. It's all for His glory.
"Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. 14 For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15 According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words."
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18