Forgiveness key on anniversary of deadly accident

CREATED Feb. 17, 2014

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NORTH FORT MYERS, Fla. - Forgiveness beyond understanding? Just over a year ago, tragedy struck a North Fort Myers woman who lost her unborn baby and was almost paralyzed from the waist down when her car was hit by a Florida Highway Patrol trooper carelessly speeding at 90 miles an hour. But now, through her pain, she's found that miracles really do happen. Four In Your Corner's Dave Culbreth sat down with the family to find out how she's doing.

The answer is - she's doing much better. And wait til you see her comments on all this. As she's saying them you should know that this woman, who is not even 30 years old yet, has not only gone through this but has lost eight family members in the last few years.

"I forgive him for it," said Crystal McClure. "I've said that since Day One".

McClure is talking about the Florida Highway Patrol trooper who was checking his emails while going nearly 90 miles an hour in his FHP cruiser when he rear ended her on I-75 last February 15th. When the trooper went to court months later, he couldn't even look at Crystal. "He told me that he couldn't talk to my wife face to face because of the pain that he had deep down because he was just gonna cry and choke up and stuff like that" said Christopher McClure. "I told him, I said, 'it's alright, we don't hate you for it'. And I said she feels sad that it happened to us but that she doesn't hate you for it."

"It was a little upsetting because I don't want anybody to have to feel like that the rest of their life," added Crystal. "I just don't want him to beat himself up over it".

"He obviously made a mistake. I mean he obviously made a bad mistake right?" asked Culbreth. "That's why they call it 'accidents'," said Christopher immediately. "They don't call em 'on purpose', they call em accidents".

"How is it you're not bitter or upset about it?" asked Culbreth. "That's the way my mom raised me," answered Crystal. "She raised us not to have hate in our heart".

Doctors told her it would be a long time before she could walk again. "Within the last four months she's gone from sitting in that wheelchair to walking around in a walker," added Christopher.

Crystal was nine months pregnant with Christian Taylor, a son who was killed in the crash. A nurse took a photo at the hospital shortly before he was pronounced dead. Their other son was a year old and was strapped in the backseat in a car seat. "He didn't have a scratch on him," said Christopher. "Don't go cheap. Do not go cheap on your car seats".

Doctors said they weren't sure if she could ever have another child but..... "She is 12 weeks and one day pregnant," announced Christopher. "Oh really?" asked Culbreth. "Yes. So, we're happy for that".

The trooper who caused the accident pled guilty to Careless Driving last year. He paid a $1,200 dollar fine and his license was suspended for six months. He is still employed by the Florida Highway Patrol.