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41

 

“With lightning speed we jumped out of the car and rushed forward. The anguish of that moment is unforgettable . . . Baba's face with blood pouring from his head . . . his eyes just staring straight ahead as if into unfathomable distances. He made no sound nor sign . . just lay there motionless . . . Elizabeth was in the car doubled over the wheel. Her first question had been 'Is he alive?' The only one not injured was Mani."

 

Elizabeth describes how the accident occurred: "It had rained the night before and Route No. 64 was slippery, oil-slick. The shoulder of the road was not wide and there were ditches on either side. As we came up over the crest of a small hill a car came along driving on the left-hand side of the road, going at a good clip. I started to slow up. This car continued without slowing up right at us on the left hand side of the road. At any instant I expected him to turn . . . at the last instant he saw us and put on the brakes, whirling around to take up the entire side of the road. The point of contact was my bumper which made him whirl all the more. Yet he, and two others with him in the front seat, were not hurt . . . We learned later he was a Korean veteran, a double amputee, who was driving for the very first time that day, a car made especially for him; also he was used to driving on the left hand side, in Japan . . . My one feeling was 'Don't go in the ditch!' Just before it happened Baba stretched out his hand and pointed at the oncoming car."

 

The first car to pass the scene was a man driving his wife to the Prague Clinic, 7 miles distant, to have a baby; it was they who summoned the ambulances. The victims had been thrown clear of the car into the soft mud. Delia continues: "In the meantime we brought our coats and covered them . . . my little pillow was put under Baba's head.* After what seemed an eternity, the ambulances arrived. Rano, Kitty and Goher went with the injured ones, and I drove with Sarosh to make phone calls and send cables.

 

"The whole Prague clinic was turned upside down to make the party comfortable. Baba was put in the surgeon's private study, and Elizabeth and Mehera in the only room available. Kitty stayed with them and Rano and Goher with Baba. As soon as possible the men were summoned back from Meher Mount and we settled in a motel, visiting the hospital each day. The townspeople brought flowers and gifts. Specialists were

 

* Now preserved at the Center in Myrtle Beach

 

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