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Durango Vacation Journal Part 15

Friday morning we said good-bye to the Stevensons. I made a Super Wal-Mart run, and just before 11:00, we left Alpen Rose RV Park. We drove steadily, and I didn’t take many pictures. Once I saw a brilliant yellow field of flowers that ran to the foot of the mountains, but I was driving, so I have no pixels by the million of that scene.

On Interstate 40, when we were about 30 minutes from Flagstaff where we would spend the night, the traffic suddenly stopped. A deadstop. Jerry turned on the CB and we learned that less than a minute ahead of us, an 18-wheeler blew a left front tire, had flipped and now lay completely across the highway. We sat in that spot for two hours. The driver survived, but with severe injuries—had to be extricated through the windshield opening. On the highway shoulders—both left and right—came numerous emergency vehicles—police cars, fire trucks, water trucks, and finally a wrecker.

We watched a helicopter fly in and set down on the highway, then probably 15 minutes later lift straight into the sky. One of the medical crew had performed a tracheotomy before airlifting the driver, whose chest had been crushed in the accident.

It was a first for us: I prepared dinner as we sat in stalled traffic. Jerry and I dined at our RV table, smack in the middle of I 40 just east of Flagstaff.

By now most of the people were out of their cars and as he is wont to do, Jerry went outside and struck up a conversation with those around us. After a while he came to the door and flashing his wide grin said, “What do you think? Some women out here need to go to the bathroom really badly.”

“Sure,” I said. “Bring them over.”

The women smiled when they climbed the steps into our rig, introduced themselves and said how much they appreciated us letting them use our bathroom. “Thank you, thank you,” they said when they were finished. They lingered and we talked a bit. Nice people, a couple traveling together, who plan to retire in two years and then do a lot of traveling. One of them had done a number 5 4-wheel trail. Somewhere in California.

Finally the wrecker had dragged most of the truck from the highway, and in single file, traffic that reached for many miles filed past the wreckage of the truck. It’s the worst wreck I have ever seen.

The sun was setting now, but our windshield was so dirty few of the pictures turned out well. The sunset was striking, and a sliver of moon hung elegantly in the dark, cloudy sky. Planes flew and marked their trail beneath the moon.

Taken in (See more photos here)


My devotional blog is here.

By Shirley Buxton

Still full of life and ready to be on the move, Shirley at 81 years old feels blessed to have lots of energy and to be full of optimism. She was married to Jerry for 64 years, and grieves yet at his death in August of 2019. They have 4 children, 13 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren...all beautiful and highly intelligent--of course. :)

11 replies on “Durango Vacation Journal Part 15”

Sharon, I wish you could see Chris and Christiana’s little boy, Drake. He looks exactly like your dad. I mean exactly. I’m sure their baby pictures would be indistinguishable. Check out my devotional blog and you’ll see his eyes, although you can’t really tell his Buxton look from there.

Your friend is probably wanting a picture…

Love you, too.


Oh Aunt Shirley,

I had such a wonderful time on your vacation. I am sure I am not as sore as you were at times, but I sure enjoyed myself. Thanks so much for taking all of us along. The trip was great!
There is a sweet lady here in Texas that needs to speak with you about an upcoming event. Call me if you need more information.


Kesha, are you saying your uncle died in an accident on Saturday? If so, I am very sorry.

The accident we observed was on Friday evening and east of Flagstaff, so it would not have been the same one.

God bless you and your family.


My uncle did in that accident and my family was looking for pictures of the accident. It happened in Kingma, Az about 6pm Saturday 09/15/07. Is that where you were??


The pictures are truly awesome. Thank the Lord you and Bro Buxton were protected in that you didn’t leave any earlier.

Sounds like you had a truly wonderful vacation. I have enjoyed reading about your trip.

Have a safe remainder of the trip home.

God Bless! Love ya!


It looks like a comet to me. I agree with rjuarez and Jana M. You are very good with your camera. With the blue window, I was thinking, if you printed it out and framed it, it would sell. I know, cuz I would buy it. 🙂 Seriously.


Sis. Buxton,
You should do a book of your pictures! They are professional grade stuff!!!!
Seriously, the last picture of the plane streaking through the sky, under a sliver of moon and over the gorgeous desert scene is breathtaking! Poster material for sure!


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