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“Oh, God! Help! He’s not breathing! He’s dead!”
A girl frantically screams for help as a 911 dispatcher struggles to understand what she’s trying to say.
As the emergency vehicles race closer, the wailing sirens are deafening.
First responders methodically recite a list of injuries, “Possible skull fracture. Open fracture right forearm. Fracture right femur...”
The gnarled metal of the wrecked vehicle becomes visible as the red and blue lights strobe.
Then the sound fades, and there is nothing but silence.
Keith Becker stopped the video and stood in front of the packed bleachers in the Neligh-Oakdale High School gym last Wednesday night. He looked at the crowd from side to side before speaking.
“My brother was a young man with so much potential, so much to live for,” Becker said slowly. “As you saw in that video, he left the narrow road that led to his life and potential, and now he’s dead.”
In the early morning hours of Feb. 6, 2005, 18-year-old Todd Becker of Kearney was killed in an alcohol-related car accident. A backseat passenger, Becker died after the car he was riding in collided with a parked pickup.
His older brother, Keith, now travels the country to tell how that tragic night dramatically changed his life and has helped him turn to God.
Becker said a pivotal moment happened when he rushed to his brother’s accident scene. At the far end of the road, he watched as the first responders shuffled around. Then, an ambulance drove away without any sirens on.
“And then I watched as some paramedics walked around, and one of those paramedics took this white drape and just placed it over the back of that car,” he said. “I could only see from afar— but I don’t know how to explain it, guys—other than to say that when they put that drape over the back of the car, it was as if I heard a voice.”
Becker said it was as if he heard his brother cry out “one last time.”
“It was as if I heard him cry out and say, ‘Keith! Keith, you told me to live this way. Tell me then, why am I dead?’” he said. “That began the stirring in my heart, ‘Am I living the right way?’”
Becker said he had helped his brother get a fake ID, buy him beer and taught him how to party. His brother had purchased two cases of beer and several bottles of hard alcohol at a local liquor store just hours before his death. Todd’s partying and promiscuous ways were his own ways.
After talking with a local pastor, he learned more about the Bible and God’s ways.
Becker said one meaningful verse to him is from Matthew 7:13, “The highway to destruction is wide, and the road that leads to it is easy for the many who choose this way. But the gateway to life is small and the narrow road that leads to it is hard, but only a few ever choose this way.”
He now encourages others to make good choices and follow God by “taking the narrow road,” using the Bible “as a roadmap.”
Becker is the founder and director of the Todd Becker Foundation in Kearney. His programs begin with a concert by the band, “Chye.” He has spoken to more than 50,000 people across the Midwest. His appearance at Neligh-Oakdale was made possible by the Calvary Bible Church in Neligh.