Truck driver Rodney Gibson was driving down a Bloomington, Indiana highway when he saw the police cruiser lights flashing in his rearview mirror. He had just received the horrendous news that his daughter, who had been fighting breast cancer, was not responding to chemotherapy treatments and didn't have long to live. Then he was brought to tears when the state trooper issued prayer rather than a ticket.
Gibson was so upset that he didn't even realize he was speeding. He also admits that when Indiana State Police Sgt. Todd Durnil stopped him, he responded to the trooper with a bit of contention.
Durnil said he was aware that Gibson seemed, "upset and angry," but that getting stopped over speeding didn't seem to be the root it. It just seemed like there was more to it than that. As he did a brief inspection of the truck, he noticed an angel pin on Gibson's visor that was identical to one that he kept in his cruiser.
He mentioned this to Gibson. Then Gibson told Durnil that his daughter gave him the pin in the hopes that it would somehow help him to stay safe on the roads. He then explained the news about his daughter's six-year battle with cancer and the grim prognosis.
Durnil said that he went back to his cruiser feeling that Gibson really needed prayer more than a ticket. He wanted to pray with him and have his family and church pray for him.
Then Durnil said he thought to himself, "this man already has enough, I'm not going to write him any paperwork for a ticket or even a warning."
When Durnil walked back to Gibson's truck he said, "I explained everything [but] he still seemed agitated, but not as bad, and he apologized, saying, 'I'm sorry, I usually don't act this way, I've just been going through a lot.'"
Durnil asked if there was anything else he could do, and Gibson asked, "Do you know how to pray?"
Durnil was surprised since he has just been thinking about that. "The good Lord put us together for a purpose."
The state trooper says he walked over to the right side of the truck, knelt down, took his hat off, took Gibson's hand and prayed. The two men had tears in their eyes as they asked God to give him and his family peace through this difficult time.
Gibson later called the station to thank Durnil for his kindness. When Gibson's company found out, they give Durnil Gibson's number so that the two can keep in touch.
"I hope everyone that hears about this is one more person that can pray for him and his family," said Durnil.