Early Sabbath morning, May 4, 2019, administrators at Oakwood University in Huntsville, Ala., were informed of a bus accident that took place in San Francisco, Calif., involving 18 students and two staff members. The students are members of the Oakwood University Aeolians who were scheduled to perform in the Bay area on May 5.
The bus transporting the students and staff was involved in a multi-vehicle accident on Highway 101, just south of Sierra Point, around 12:25 a.m. PDT, on May 4, while traveling from the San Francisco airport. Students and staff members were checked onsite by EMTs, and initial reports revealed no life-threatening injuries.
The University is grateful for the role played by first-responders, and for the prayerful support and encouragement from local alumni, the Board of Trustees, and support personnel from the San Francisco area who aided the students and staff. Just hours after the accident, the Aeolians worshipped with the members of the Philadelphia Church in San Francisco.
“Geeta,” a friend of Oakwood at the Leicester Central Church in the United Kingdom, heard parts of the live-streamed concert at San Francisco’s Third Baptist Church on Sunday, May 5. She commented, “Our God is awesome. He saved His own … I heard their singing … and they were declaring the glory of God. Their singing sounded awesome. Continue to praise Him.” The choir members’ experience was covered by several outlets of the media.
The choir members returned to Huntsville safely, albeit shaken up, following this last tour of the school year and the aftermath of the accident. They were welcomed at the Huntsville International Airport on the night of May 7 by members of the Oakwood family and local media. The next day, the Department of Health & Counseling Service offered the Aeolians an afternoon of self-care, pampering, and healing. From 1 to 5 p.m., counselors from the Office of Spiritual Life and massage therapists were available to offer trauma and spiritual counseling, massage, and quiet time in the tranquility room.
While many are extremely grateful for God’s protection and mercy, they are saddened by the fact that a precious life was lost. Please continue to pray for the victim’s family and the healing of Oakwood students. Your support during this time means a lot to them.
For any who would like to aid members of the Aeolians, visit give.oakwood.edu to help with the Aeolians Relief Fund.
The Aeolians’ final performance of the 2018-2019 academic year was a mini- concert on May 11, at the Von Braun Center, just before Commencement.
Oakwood University | July 2019