Jerry: In March 1997, my wife Jan and I drove our Priva van (with a large glass windshield in the front), pulling a fully loaded trailer from Sisters, Oregon, to an art stamp convention in Southern California.
We decided to leave late at night to miss the winter storm moving in the next day. After driving through Klamath Falls around midnight, we came around a bend in the road. As our headlights lit the long stretch of highway in front of us, we could see a herd of deer standing all across the roadway.
The deer stood frozen, staring at our headlights as we sped towards them at sixty-five mph. I slammed on the brakes, but I could feel the trailer pushing us forward.
Jan: I frantically searched for an open space where our van could drive through. But deer covered both sides of the highway. With the Priva windshield that comes down in front, we could clearly see the deer directly in front of us.
Jerry: I put my arm out in front of Jan to try and protect her. I knew I couldn’t avoid hitting the deer or going through the windshield. I heard Jan scream out at the top of her lungs, “Jesus, help us! Jesus, help us! Jesus, help us!”
Jan: While I was screaming, we reached the herd, but we amazingly went right THROUGH the bodies of the deer!
Jerry: I brought the van to a near stop on the other side of the deer. Jan and I just stared at each other with our mouths dropped open.
I told her, “Jan, there has got to be blood and guts and hooves all over the front of this van.”
Yet we never felt one thing! Not even the slightest nudge.
When we arrived at the California–Oregon border fruit inspection center just past a town called Dorris, we stopped where there were lots of lights and got out of the van. My legs felt like jello. We looked all over the front of our van, but we found nothing wrong, not even one scratch!
Jan: I can remember at the time, that if the windshield hadn’t been there, I could have reached out to pet the deer in front of us as we seemed to go through the herd in slow-motion.
Jerry: I couldn’t understand how we stayed solid and yet transparently floated through the deer as if they weren’t there.
I was especially glad Jan was with me in the car, because if I had come home and told her the story of what happened, she would have thought I’d been smoking whacky-tobaccy again and had some kind of hallucination. Jan and I are so opposite. I’m the dreamer, the artist. She is rock solid. She has to know for sure something is real.
Both of us experienced a miracle beyond our imagination! If God had not intervened, we would have died or at least been seriously injured. I also realized there was no gap between the end of Jan’s prayer and the start of the miracle. She cried out and God miraculously answered!
Soon after we got home from the convention, I sat down and opened my Bible. When I looked down, I saw the verse:
“[God] will deliver the needy who cry out.”
Psalm 72:12 NIV
Story by Jerry & Jan Werner