High School Snowboarder Says it’s a Miracle He’s Alive
With his little brother buried under an avalanche, a teen cries out to God…with amazing results.
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“Saturday, February 8th was picture-perfect, with 10-foot drifts of fluffy-looking snow scattered across the Bench. It was snow that seemed to have been there for months, with little risk of avalanche,” notes the website. Normally, the brothers – who are best friends – would have snowboarded off the top of the ridge together. But on that day, younger brother Matt was ready to go first and spun off the top, hurtling down the 60-degree incline.
Michael stood at the edge, pulling on his gloves.
"All of a sudden Michael saw the whole mountain go off,” their father recalls. Michael had to flip his body backward to avoid being swept over the edge himself.
When he got up, slightly dazed, the mountainside was enveloped in an enormous cloud of snow dust – and Michael had no idea where his little brother might be. He knew, however, that Matt had probably been caught by the avalanche, which covered an area the size of two football fields.
Michael had no idea where to look, says their father. The older boy realized his cellphone was in his pickup and he worried whether he should run to the truck and dial 9-1-1 – assuming he had a signal. Or should he try to find his brother?
Buried avalanche victims usually have no more than 15 minutes to live. The air trapped with them is used up and they die.
Michael never felt so hopeless or helpless in his life, recalls the Christian Post. Frantically, he cried out to God: "What should I do?"
Afterward, he told his father, "Dad, I've never heard God speak before, but I heard him there. He said, 'Go find your brother.' It was very clearly the voice of God."
Michael began to work his way down the debris field, knowing every minute counted with his brother buried somewhere out of sight.
Generally rescuers have about seven minutes to find someone buried by an avalanche before they pass out. “In 15 minutes you're usually dead," notes the boys’ dad.
Matt's head was buried three feet below the surface. Because of his hood, there was a tiny area in front of his face that was ice-free. He tried to dig upward, but the snow has turning to ice because of the warmth of his breath. "He was cemented in. There was no way he could move. He dug up as far as he could, but he couldn't get to the surface."
“It was one of those mind-numbing moments that etches itself into a memory like nothing else,” reported WND. Matt had flown down the slope on his snowboard, but when the massive wave of snow caught him, “it hit me with a lot of force,” he told WND. With no idea how deep he was buried, he struggled, but knew it would take a miracle for him to survive.
“Michael, had flung himself backward when the snow broke to not get caught,” reports AG News, the news service of the Assemblies of God churches. “Then he had run down the slope after his brother.”
“The only thing I knew to do was cry out to God and ask, ‘What should I do – call search and rescue or go find him?’” Michael told AG News. “God spoke to me, ‘Go find your brother.’ I followed His orders, I didn’t think about it, I ran down the hill and chunks of snow the size of my truck were still coming down around me.”