What It Feels Like to Have A Near Death Experience

As told by Mark Boarini.


Photo by Mark Boarini

At that moment the sound of the radio blurred out the thoughts in my mind.

Route 83 seemed like a never ending road that determined my fate. The clear night was a precious gift. The people, the cars and the street lights seemed nothing more than witnesses. The thoughts that taunted me as I waited for an impact  would not stop for my pleading mind.

At that moment my wife and children had no idea. The worry that filled my body knew the worst was yet to come. The seatbelt seemed as though it was the only hope I had to grasp onto for my life. The seconds dragged on and as well as the wait I was not yet ready to endure.

At that moment as I turned the steering wheel to the right as hard as I possibly could only one thing came to mind, “He’s going to hit me.”

At that moment, I could do nothing but hope that God would take over. Because if he hadn’t I would not be here today.

It was a Friday night. November 14 at 7 p.m. to be exact. I got in the car alone, which was not the original plan. My daughter Katie and my wife Kathy planned on joining me, although I am beyond thankful they hadn’t. Minutes before I stepped foot in the car, Katie made plans and Kathy decided to stay back as well. I was grateful.

It was just a normal day as I headed down the road. The radio was playing and I was at peace with my thoughts. The roads were clear and I had no idea what the minutes ahead would bring. Little did I know that those few seconds between peace and chaos could be so precious.

The intersection came quicker than I wanted. I didn’t see it coming till a few seconds before. All that I could think was to hold on tight. I grabbed the steering wheel and looked for an escape route. The trailer behind me was even more of an obstacle in avoiding my death. All of the sudden, it happened.

Three… Two… One.

When I felt the shake of the car, I could not think. My mind stopped as the world around me continued. I kept thinking something was bound to come through my window ending my life. I told myself to keep my eyes open. If nothing else, don’t close my eyes. Make sure you know where you are.

The drunk driver that hit my 2009 Tahoe did not take into consideration what he was taking away from me. As he drove straight into the trailer connected to my car, he had no idea of the pain he was about cause me and my loved ones. As my car flipped I knew that this could be it. The shaking of the car, the hard grip I refused to break on the seatbelt, the determination to never close my eyes and the thought of my wife and kids were my motivation to make it out of that car alive. No matter what, that car would not become my grave.

After the car flipped two-and-a-half times, I landed upright. The first voice I heard was the Onstar woman. She started to talk. I didn’t have time to think as she immediately said, “Hello Mark, this is Onstar, are you okay?” After a few more questions the Onstar rep had for me, she ended with one final question: “Is there anyone you would like me to call?” Of course I had her call my wife. I stayed in the damaged car until the EMTs arrived.

As anyone would be after what I had just experienced, I was pretty shook up. As they led me to the ambulance, they had prevented me from approaching the other vehicle. It turned out that the drunk driver who almost took my life was not hurt badly.

Although things could’ve ended worse, this accident changed my life. The car that I had once loved was now completely ruined. The trailer that belonged to my father who has passed on was no longer a part of the family after 60 years. I now experience extreme neck pain as a result of the whiplash during the impact. I’d like to look as the crash as an experience, not a regret. I do not regret getting in the car that day. In fact, I got to help my son move a bed into his new apartment. That day did not kill me, it only made me stronger.

I don’t think I have any room for forgiveness. At least not yet. I am lucky to be here. I had no control of the fate I was handed, and I am here for a reason. God took me in his hands, and I could not be more thankful for the life I still have.