Many parents say they would do anything for their kids, even lay down their life. Most, fortunately, don’t have to prove it, but on June 23 in Lumberton, Mississippi, one father named Bradley Christensen, just 24 years old, didn’t hesitate.
HEARTBREAKING: Bradley Christensen, 24, was crushed and killed by a tractor while saving his 3-year-old daughter from the same fate.
— WALB News 10 (@WALBNews10) June 29, 2018
That Saturday afternoon, he was outside talking to his landlord while his kids played nearby. Suddenly, he realized that his 3-year-old daughter had somehow managed to climb on top of a tractor. It was as simple as pushing a start button and the tractor and hapless driver were headed for a crash into the landlord’s house.
With only seconds to act, Christensen leaped into action to save her. He ran to the tractor and managed to pull her off to safety, but then his leg was caught under the tire. In seconds, he was pulled underneath the crushing wheel.
“He ran and grabbed my granddaughter off the tractor and then it sucked him underneath,” said his fiance’s mother, Louise Gooden. “Then it hit the porch. It had him pinned underneath and the wheel kept spinning and crushed him.”
His heroic act had saved his little girl, but sadly, Christensen died soon after. He was airlifted to a hospital by first responders, but could not be saved.
His fiancé, Ashley Marshall, who was indoors sleeping at the time of the accident, recalled what an amazing and loyal father he had been to his two children, as well as her three kids.
“Three of my children were not his, but he cared so much for my kids that you’d never be able to tell. He was the best dad I’ve ever met in my life. He stepped in when their dad wouldn’t,” Ashley mentioned proudly.
Christensen’s kids were the biggest focus of his life, as his older brother, James attested:
“We all had our dark days and he’d just gotten out of his. He was really trying to get out of that rut, but what really saved him was his kids,” said James.
Marshall recalled how his kids followed him everywhere he went.
“Since I was working so much, many times he was Mr. Mommy and Mr. Dad ’cause he was always with them. Anywhere he was, they were. They would walk around like little ducklings behind him,” Marshall recalled.
He had proven his devotion to the children before. In December 2017, they lost their 3-month-old baby. Christensen tried to save the little girl, performing CPR for 35 minutes while they waited for paramedics.
While he wasn’t able to save her, he will always be remembered for heroically saving little Lyla.
“He always did say he’d die behind his kids if it came down to it. After we heard the news, my momma said, ‘He didn’t get to save the first one, so he made damn sure to save this one.'”
A GoFundMe page has been created to help Ashley pay for funeral expenses.
Featured image: Screenshot via Facebook