November 29, 2020

A Miracle Of Life

(Article Courtesy of the Times~Journal)

(Franklin, GA) — Miracle is defined in the Webster’s dictionary as any wonderful or amazing thing, fact or event; a wonder; an event in the natural world, but out of its established order, possible only by the intervention of divine power.

About a year ago on March 14th, 2014 a miracle is what Harvey Kendrick, a 59-year-old Heard County man became.

Harvey had worked for Georgia Power at Plant Wansley for the past 37 years, his job title was Boiler Turbine Operator. Plant Wansley was in their annual maintenance shutdown, which is a process of checking and fixing equipment to make sure everything is in working order.

Around 4:45 in the afternoon Harvey was in the Plant’s Control Room, which is located over 50 feet above the ground. He received a work order to check on some equipment. He proceeded to the belted man lift, a machine that moves non-stop allowing travel from floor to floor as you step on and ride.

Pastor Debbie Kendrick and her husband Harvey Kendrick

Pastor Debbie Kendrick and her husband Harvey Kendrick

Just before stepping on to the man lift, Harvey’s foot got stuck in the steel grate on the floor. He attempted to grab hold of a ladder, but the man lift moving down turned his body upside down and as his foot released, his horrific fall of more than 50 feet began.

As Harvey fell he recalled a sense of peace and no fear, as his body began to hit steel and concrete on the way down. At one point, he hit his head and lost consciousness briefly. He hit the bottom of the belted man lift, located on the base floor of the plant, landing headfirst, fully awake.

James Scott, a sub-contractor working at Georgia Power stated, “My crew was working in the area installing pipe when Harvey fell. My superintendent, Gunter O’Neal called me on the radio and told me a man has fell from the man lift I need you, I need you now!”

Scott headed immediately to where the location while calling for help on his radio. “As I arrived to the area I never expected to see a person alive from that fall, much less to ever walk again.”

Co-workers and contractors rushed to help. They stood Harvey up. As they held him, he leaned his head on the wall and said, “I feel weak.” A co-worker got on his hands and knees forming a place on his own back for Harvey to sit. Minutes later, the Georgia Power Rescue Team arrived and transported Harvey out on a stretcher and rushed him by ambulance to a helicopter pad.

Harvey was flown to Grady Hospital in Atlanta. He recalls wishing he could look out the window of the helicopter and the perfect peace he felt. Weakness from the loss of blood and the neck brace made it impossible.

An official from Georgia Power contacted Harvey’s son, Lee Kendrick, an employee at Georgia Power Plant Yates, informing him of the news of his father’s fall.

Harvey’s wife, Debbie, received a call from their son Lee. Debbie and Emily McCormick, church clerk of Heaven Bound Church of God, were together at the time of the call. Emily and Debbie drove to Lee’s house not knowing whether her beloved husband was alive or dead.

Debbie recalls crying out to God on the ride. Debbie said, “God, please don’t take him. Oh God, please, please don’t take him.” As the tears rolled down her cheeks she spoke, “But God, even if you do take him, I will still praise YOU! God, you know how much I love you and you know how much I love Harvey. You know he is the desire of my heart. I will still serve you! I will do whatever you want me to do and I know you will help me to face whatever I have to face.”

Emily stated, “I knew Debbie was a woman of strong faith but what I witnessed on that ride, I will never forget. She praised God the entire ride from Bowdon to Lee’s house in Roopville and never wavered. Later Lee told me that his Mom continued expressing her love for Jesus, praying and praising the Lord all the way to Grady Hospital.”

Lee and Debbie drove to Tanner Medical Center in Carrollton only to find out Harvey had been flown to Atlanta.

Upon arriving at Grady Hospital, Debbie was met by the President of Georgia Power, the Southern Company CEO, the Plant Manager of Plant Wansley and other Georgia Power officials.

A portion of the gruesome injuries suffered by Harvey Kendrick in the March, 2014 fall

A portion of the gruesome injuries suffered by Harvey Kendrick in the March, 2014 fall

When Debbie was allowed into the trauma center her eyes met Harvey’s. She took his hand and said, “Baby I’m here, lets pray.” Harvey gave a tight squeeze on her hand as Debbie began to pray.

A man falling more than 50 feet headfirst in this world seems a sure death, a life ended in a tragedy, with family, friends, and co-workers devastated.

Debbie said, “But…God!” Psalm 91:11 says, “ For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.” Debbie remembers this verse coming to mind over and over while Harvey was in the hospital.

Harvey spent five days at Grady Hospital and was released to Shepherd Center in Atlanta for therapy, where he spent the following two weeks.

Debbie said, “Harvey and I have been blessed with no stress of the medical bills during this whole ordeal. Georgia Power has taken care of all medical expenses due to the accident, providing the very best care and doctors up to this date.”

Harvey stated, “I still have a few issues with my ankle, foot, back and some short-term memory loss, but Praise God I’m Alive!”

Georgia Power spokesperson John Kraft was contacted and released this statement: “We are very glad to see how well Harvey is doing, and wish him continued progress and success in his recovery.”

Debbie was asked why God allowed this to happen. “To tell the world that God is alive and still performs miracles,” she stated. Debbie says if you want to see a living miracle come to Heaven Bound Church of God in Centralhatchee and meet her miracle man, Harvey.

In the famous words of Paul Harvey, “Now for the rest of the story.” About three weeks prior to Harvey’s fall, Nathan McCormick, Emily’s husband had a dream three nights in a row where he saw Harvey in the hospital bed with tubes, wires and blood everywhere. He shared this with Debbie after him and his wife prayed about it. She decided to keep it from Harvey for the time being and prayed about the dream.

A week or so before the accident Brother Charles Davis of Heaven Bound Church spoke up in church and stated, “Brother Harvey I feel the need to pray for you. Are you hurting?” Harvey replied, “No, I feel fine.”

Davis said, “I feel like something is about to happen.” At that time Debbie started crying and shared the dream with the church. Everyone gathered around Harvey and prayed. Debbie stated, “The Holy Spirit spoke to my heart at that time and told me to pray over every inch of Harvey’s body every day.”

Debbie shared a hand written note dated April 4, 2014, which read:

“Praise God! Today my husband is able to walkout from this precious, caring, wonderful Shepherd Center. Harvey Kendrick fell three weeks ago today at the Georgia Power Company Plant Wansley and lived and now healed in Jesus name! It pays to love and serve God because nothing is impossible or too hard for God if we have faith to believe. God heals in many ways. My husband was blessed at this time to live and not die. Only because of Jesus, the miracle Harvey received and the help from an awesome staff at the Shepherd Center are we able to go home today! Thank you Jesus! We love You!! Love your daughter, Debbie Kendrick.”

Debbie Kendrick has been the Pastor of Heaven Bound Church of God for 23 years. She invites everyone to come and worship the Lord, let us praise him together because He is worthy.

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