Deseret News, Salt Lake City, Utah – Chris Williams made a decision as he stared out the shattered windshield of his overturned car, fully and painfully aware that his wife, their unborn son, 11-year-old son and 9-year-old daughter were dead. He decided to forgive the driver who caused the wreck.
On Feb. 9, 2007, the Williams family was on their way home from a night out when 17-year-old Cameron White, driving from the other direction, slammed into the side of their car. It happened too fast for Chris Williams, who was driving, to get out of the way.
White would later plead guilty to four counts of second-degree felony automobile homicide (charges of driving under the influence of alcohol and leaving the scene of an injury accident were dropped). But before Williams even knew the teen’s name or the circumstances, he knew he had to let it (the act) go.
At the time of the accident in 2007, Williams did not realize the impact his decision would have on the community. In the years since, his story has become a sermon on healing and forgiveness. Williams has endeavored to help members of his ward and state congregations, family members, and even people he didn’t know to heal from this and other personal tragedies. He’s given talks, was featured in a Mormon Messages video and has now written a book, Let It Go: A True Story of Tragedy and Forgiveness.