My Dad a.k.a "The Ornery Mummy"

On Sunday, while I was driving home from the prison with our Praise Team, I received a phone call from my younger sister.

She was calling to tell me that my dad had been in a car accident…at which time my heart almost stopped beating…and then hurriedly went on to explain that he had been taken to the hospital in an ambulance but had already been released. Even though he was sore, she had been told that he was feeling fairly good considering the circumstances.

My heart started beating again. I offered a quick prayer of thanksgiving for the hand of protection that had been upon my dad. A feeling of relief surged through my body. And then I listened to the rest of the details pertaining to the accident.

My parents were in Illinois at the time visiting their siblings (they were both born and raised in northern Illinois near the Sterling/Rock Falls area.) While my dad was driving to one of my aunt’s homes, he came to a complete stop because the car in front of him was waiting to make a left-hand turn. In my dad’s rearview mirror, he could see a car coming up behind him but it didn’t slow down at all. Even though he was in town, the car hit him full speed going around 45 mph. I can’t even imagine how horrifying it was to watch that car coming up behind him and knowing that there was absolutely nothing he could do about it.

My parents stayed in Illinois a few days longer than they had planned to fill out the police report, get things going with the insurance company, and to check out the damage to my dad’s cute little car. My poor dad just finally got his very first, brand-new car a few years ago…the car of his dreams (a PT Cruiser)…and it is now in very pitiful condition.

On their way home last night, they stopped by my house to pick up Molly. Molly is their dog…that used to be my dog…until we had four kids…at which point she turned into a very nervous dog (I mean really…who could blame her?)…at which time my parents decided that she would become their dog…after a lot of begging from me. Molly now lives in Doggy Heavenland at my parent’s home ~ it’s nice and quiet, peaceful, and free of kids who want to torture her by making her “play” with them all day long. She’s a beautiful, smart, 15 year-old dog who is living the retirement of her dreams!
And she also now wears bows in her ears, polish on her toenails and sweaters. Oh my word.

So, dad and mom stopped by to get Molly. I was in my bedroom and didn’t hear them come in until Weslea ran in yelling “Mom! Grandpa is here!” I started to head out towards the living room when Weslea whispered in a slightly worried voice….”Mom, there’s something on his head.”

I reassured her real quick that “Remember Grandpa got in a car accident this weekend? That’s why he has something on his head.” (In my mind I’m totally picturing the small bump on his forehead that had been described to me.) She looked at me like I was nuts and again whispered urgently “But there’s something on his head!” I just replied “Weslea, that’s to be expected. Grandpa got in a car accident but he’s fine now. Remember?”

And then I walked into the living room and was greeted with this sight:

For the second time this week I felt my heart stop and now my mind began racing as well…“Oh my Lord…they lied to us on the phone. The accident was a lot worse than they said. Is he alright? How bad is he injured? Why did they drive home when he was still hurting so bad? What in the world were they thinking?!”

And then my brain started working again and my thoughts became more sane as I started to remember just how much of an ORNERY BUGGER my Dad is. I turned to my Mom and said “This has to be a joke, right? Because this is not what I was told happened at all.” Mom couldn’t hold it in even one second longer and dissolved into a fit of the giggles at the practical joke they had pulled on me. Dad and I started laughing as well while the kiddos all stood around, staring at us, with their mouths drooping open, probably thinking that we had all completely lost our minds.

After I reassured the kids that everything was okay, they joined in on the laughter and fun as well. Unfortunately for him, Sweatiepy missed out on the whole thing because he was at the Men’s Bible Study at our church. When he got home, the first words out of my mouth were “My Dad is such a big, stinky jerkwad!” I explained to him what my dad had done and he replied “Did you read the email that your Dad’s friend, Ron, sent out to everyone?”

I hadn’t seen it so I quickly got on the computer and proceeded to get another good laugh as I read the words that my Dad’s good friend had written to him after the accident (and then very kindly forwarded to all the rest of us as well.)

(Here is some of their history so you can follow along in the letter…my dad’s friend’s name is Ron and his wife is Esther; my dad is a colon cancer survivor of several years, but almost died at that time when the operating doctor accidentally left a surgical sponge in him and then sewed him back up during the surgery; my dad is also an ordained minister…Ron is not a Pastor but he likes to tease my dad about it.)

And here’s his loving note to my dad:


Wow, I sure am sorry to hear the news… please call if we can be of any help (you could rent Esther’s van, that would save me $100s each week in shopping expense)…..

Oh, by the way, WSDR radio had it on the news late last night and early this morning, but………………………………….They said “an old man from Ohio, with a scar from a sponge removal was backing down the street and hit a poor young local girl”……………… appears to be a different story by local news media????


Please do let me know what we can do.

Pastor Ronald J. Hartz
Sterling, Illinois

I think those two ornery boys deserve each other as friends…don’t you? They sure keep things fun though!