"I went to Jerusalem to become acquainted (Gk. istoria) with Cephas" - Paul's words from Galatians 1:18.

In Memorium: Isaac King, Aaron Davis, Sarah Foster, Steve Dillon



Late last night four very special young people, ages 21, 20, 19, 18 respectively, all of whom loved Christ, died in an automobile accident heading home to Enid. All four had spent the day rafting the Illinois River in Eastern Oklahoma with Dr. John Stam's family (our church's Missions Pastor), and were coming home at 10:00 p.m. when they were killed in a headon crash on Interstate 412 while passing through a construction zone in Sand Springs, Oklahoma. Two adults in the car that crossed the median and hit the kids' car also died.

Two of the four young people, Isaac King and Steve Dillon, played in our REFUGE band for our Saturday night worship gathering. Isaac played bass guitar, and Steve-O Dillon played drums. Isaac was leaving this week to join the singing group Primary Focus and then planned on attending Liberty University.

Steve-O was a quiet person who loved music. He was as brilliant as his brother, Ben, who recently graduated from Yale Divinity School. Steve-O's dad, Matt, died suddenly and unexpectedly just a couple of years ago, so Steve, through his own personal experience knew the meaning of the brevity of life.

Aaron Davis was a rock climber. He and Isaac were taken under the wing of one of our church members, Bill Ward, who taught them both how to mountain climb. The bigger the rock the better. Aaron was one of a family of nine, and highly respected by all who knew him.

Sarah Foster loved life, her family and her friends. She was part of the home school association that gathered for extra-curricular activities where deep, Christian friendships were formed, including those she had with the three boys who died with her. Her brother, Ben, a student at Oklahoma Bible Academy is left with a memory of a sister who taught him what it meant to follow Christ no matter the cost.

Tentative funeral arrangements for all four are scheduled for this Saturday.

I know their families would appreciate your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. Today we are all reminded of what is really important in life.

In His Grace,


Wade

44 comments:

Royce Ogle said...

I am so sorry. May God's peace rest on family and friends.

You are in my prayers.

Grace and Peace,
Royce Ogle

Paul Burleson said...

Wade,

I had not read nor heard of this tragedy when I wrote the post just put up on my ministry blog. But I must say I'm shaken. Having been with your people on many occasions over these past 14 years I'm aware of the significant loss to these families and to your fellowship.

Please convey my deepest sorrow to those affected and know Mom and I are praying for you as you minister from a broken heart.

DAD

davidinflorida said...

Pastor Wade, I am sorry for the loss of these young adults.... Its at times like this that we fall back and remember what is truly important in our lives.... I will pray for there families ....GOD is still on the throne, Psalms 148

Wes Kenney said...

I will be praying for these families, and for you, Wade, as you minister to them.

Dorcas said...

I am honored to have shared one hour of worship with these young lives before God took them home.

My heartfelt prayers lift for the comfort of their families, and for strength to you as you minister to them in the weeks ahead.

johnMark said...

What a sad loss. I will be praying for you, the families and the whole church family.

Trusting Him,
Mark

Kevin Bussey said...

I'm so sorry! Please let your church family know that there are praying for the families and your church family.

For His Glory said...

What a tragedy Wade...

Certainly a reminder to us all of the brevity and preciousness of life.

Darren

Les Puryear said...

The families of these young men are in our thoughts and prayers. May God grant you wisdom as you minister to them.

Blessings,

Les

Ben Carr said...

Emmanuel Family,
These 4 young people that lost their lives last night were truly a community of friends that connected regularly and many knew who they were. Having Isaac playing for Refuge and Student Ministry these past few months has been truly a blessing. This past Sunday, there was something different about Isaac that I noticed and many others. He was truly in the presence of God as he led & played the students to the throne. He has truly left a legacy that we all desire to have, as well as Steve O, Sarah, and Aaron. We are praying for all the families involved!

cameron said...

What a tragedy. My heart goes out to the families and to your church. I'll be praying for you all.

Bob Cleveland said...

Wade:

They counted while they were here. Something to which we can all aspire.

Tim said...

I'm so sorry.

No pithy words.... Just grief.

I know that God will use you and your staff to minister to the families.

It's just that the Loss of Young ones seem to hit harder than most. I've had multiple families in my congregation loose children.

God Bless~

Tim

Chuck Andrews said...

Wade,

Our prayers are with the families, friends, and all who grieve during this time of earthly loss. As a parent, I can't imagine the pain and bewilderment. May Holy Spirit’s ministry of comfort be amazingly prevalent to all.

Chuck

Bart Barber said...

What a sobering tragedy. Our prayers are with you.

Mike & Cherri said...

Hi, Wade -

I just talked with Tami - one of Isaac's aunts - who I now work with - and she mentioned something Isaac's dad said that brought a smile even in the hurt. Isaac's dad mentioned that Isaac was competitive and LOVED being first and that even in THIS - in going HOME - he had to be first -

I can tell this family is hurting and yet able to share a laugh in their hurt because of WHOSE WE ARE.

Isaac is STILL touching lives and his family continues to testify in their pain -

Cherri

CB Scott said...

Wade,

May the grace of our God and Father grant you wisdom and the perfect grace of assurance as you minister to the families of these young people and possibly to the families of the others that lost their lives also.

Our calling is often hard, as you well know, and I am certain that all of us that know that calling are praying for you and your church family right now and most certainly for the families that have lost their loved ones.

Go to the work of the pastor, my brother, with assurance that your fellow-laborers are lifting you up to our Lord in the power of the Spirit.

cb

Bro. Robin said...

Bro. Wade

We will add the families to our prayer list. Please convey our deepest sense of love to the families who have lost loved ones. May God bless you with wisdom, compassion, and grace as you minister to them and your church.

Grace and Truth to You

Bro. Robin

Charlie said...

Wade

My respects and condolenses to the 4 families. In april, my 38 year old daughter was suddenly called home to be with the LORD. Our hope and belief is that we will see her again. We grieve but our hope is in JESUS and that has gotten us through.

Charlie

IN HIS NAME said...

Wade,

Each day God gathers a Bouquet of His Flowers and the four young one( Isaac King, Aaron Davis, Sarah Foster, Steve Dillon) were among the Bouquet for that day. They each brought Honor and Glory to God on High. Our prayers are with the family and thank God for their witness of JESUS CHRIST OUR Lord and Savior in their life here on earth.

Love
In Jesus Name Wayne and Irene

irreverend fox said...

wow,

may the peace of the Lord Jesus Christ fill the church during this unreal tragedy.

tim rogers said...

Brother Wade,

Just had a chance to read your post. I am sorry for the loss. I will be praying and ask our church to lift up these families as they deal with this tragedy.

God Bless you my brother. I pray God's wisdom as you prepare and minister to these families. I am hugging my little girl with an extra special hug tonight.

As CB referenced, I will hold up your arms in prayer as you minister in this difficult time.

Blessings,
Tim

Stephen Pruett said...

My prayers are with the families and friends of these young people and with you and your church family as you minister and grieve.
God Bless

WTJeff said...

Wade,

May the wisdom and graciousness you've displayed on this blog be evident to these families as you love them in Jesus name. I know you minister from a broken heart, but they are truly fortunate to have you as their pastor. May the peace and grace of our Lord abound in your heart and overflow to these families.

T. D. Webb said...

Wade,
Prayers for the families, you and the rest of Emmanuel Baptist Church during this trying time. May our gracious and merciful Lord use us all the more in trusting Him to be our Comforter, grant us peace, and give us hope in Him, even in this tragic hour. I wrote the following in memory of a dear Christian friend who went home to be with the Lord not long ago. In sharing the poem, I dedicate it to those who knew these young people, loved them, and were touched by the ministries which the Lord gave them:


Is There a Way to Say Good-bye?

Is there a way to say good-bye,
when life flees west
to sunset's glow,
seeking rest from One
who hears, stories etched
with scars and tears,
Is there a way to say good-bye?

What is the way to say good-bye,
before this autumn’s
sun-filled day slips
out on wisps of clouds
that disappear,
dimmed light announcing
night is near,
What is the way to say good-bye?

We’ll say good-bye
when twilight comes
on daydreams’ bed
we’ll sing old songs,
speak oft’ told tales
cross-stitched in time,
whistle tunes,
read poems that rhyme,
while they last,
we’ll say good-bye.


In His Grace and Peace,
T. D. Webb

jthomas899 said...

Wade, We are praying for you, the church, and the families.

Jeff

GeneMBridges said...

Tonight, on the way home from dinner, I heard a sermon by John Piper. He reminded us that, in all his years of ministry he loves funerals more than weddings. Weddings, he said, are full of all sorts of earthly good wishes and blessings, but funerals...

Funerals remind us that the gospel is true; that we are, above all others, the most blessed. Our time is short here on the earth, but one day, we will apprehend the beauty of Christ in all His glory and see all those who have gone before. This is our hope, our faith, our comfort. May God grant His grace to the families of these young people and my brothers and sisters at Emmanuel Enid.

God Bless,

Gene

TruthOfActs said...

Weep for no one that lives with the Lord, but our hearts go out to those left behind.
In our dreams they may be with us a short time, but we know someday we will be with them and they will say, “Come see Jesus!”
Rex

Alan Cross said...

I'm so sorry, Wade. This is truly heartbreaking. I have grieved over this all day, since I first read your post. My prayers are with the families and I pray that the God of all comfort will comfort them in the midst of their pain. I am so sorry.

kevin said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you from halfway around the world.

Scotte Hodel said...

I remember and still feel my own grief; I will pray. I wrote this a couple years ago when the pain had returned for awhile:

Twilight has fallen
Darkness enfolds
Sometimes in cloud
Sometimes with distant stars
Colors always diminished
Chill
But today I can remember the sun
Its warmth on my face
Wisdom in my heart
Speaks
Memory is all I have
Memory becomes what I am
If I remember
If I am
Perhaps you will see the sun
And know what they meant to me.

martyduren said...

Wade-
You are in our prayers as are Emmanuel and the families of these precious saints of God.

Dull Iron said...

Pastor Wade. The grief is far reaching.

I wasn't sure why at first, but this time of grief has reminded me of those who criticize blogging or even your chosen way of blogging. Some of those folks have expressed their grief here at this time. I think now is a time to be thankful for blogging while holding its partakers to a biblical standard. For these families would be minus this missionaries prayers of comfort from the cold, dark corner of Russia were it not for blogging.

We marvel today at the blessing of once again being able to approach the throne of the sovereign God offering these prayers on their behalf.

Share the grief brothers and sisters...and give the glory to God in all things.

Please tell the families that prayers are flowing up from Russia today.

Dull Iron

dwm III said...

Wade,

I am sorry to hear of your loss. My prayers are with you.

Dougald

Wade Burleson said...

To One and All,

I will be forwarding your words of comfort and prayers to the respective families.

In His Grace,

wade

Pastor Steve said...

Wade, I'm sorry about your young people. I know how shaken your folks must be, and how devastated their families. I will keep you all in my prayers. I will pray that the Lord would use this event to bring many to Christ.

Steve

Alycelee said...

What a wonderful tribute to not only the lives of these youth, but the lives of the families.
These families and your church family will all be in our prayers.

Hebrews 11:38 "the world was not worthy of them"
This has been such a comfort to me in times that God has pointed me to eternity and what really matters.
Alyce and Mackey

Jim Paslay said...

I am reminded of the words from years back "when you can't trace the hand of God, trust His heart." Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and the church!

sisinok said...

Bro. Wade,
I live just 3 miles from where this accident took place. I drive that road many times a day. The families and you are in my daily prayers.
elizabeth h.

GeneMBridges said...

Wade,

This comes from the pastor of Shepherd's Fellowship Baptist Church in Greensboro, NC on behalf of our members:

Father, please comfort pastor Wade and those dear families that have lost those precious loved ones.

I know You do all things well for Your glory and may brother Wade and Immanuel rest in your Sovereign decree at this time.

We Love you Lord Jesus for your purchasing of these departed souls, and we glory that they are in Your glory right now!


In Jesus name, amen.

Pastor Dusty

David Rogers said...

We cling to grace. We cling to mercy. We cling to hope that one day, when we are all gathered together in eternity, this will all make sense.

In the meantime, I grieve together with you, and pray for special grace and wisdom for you, and for the bereaved families during this time of loss.

Tim Sweatman said...

May the families and friends of these young people experience the comfort of the Lord during this painful time, and may the Lord work through you and the people at Emmanuel as vessels of His love.

Lester said...

Those guys made a huge impact in the lives of so many kids, and I am happy to be apart of them. I'll keep the famlies and friends of these wonderful people in my prayers. Isaas, Aaron, Sarah, Steve-O, we miss you! But we'll meet again soon.

Rebekah King said...

Today is Isaac's(my brother) birthday. I have no pictures of him on my phone and was looking for some online and came across this. All of the prayers and words from everyone are extremely heartfelt. I can't express how much over flowing appreciation I feel for what everyone said here. I want to thank everyone from the depths of my heart.