‘God healed me’
SEPTEMBER 11 is a date that will forever be etched on Timothy Moore’s brain.
It was on that date in 2004 that he was plunged into the valley of the shadow of death. Moore would languish there for 11 days.
The now 56-year-old vividly recounted to the SUNDAY SUN how he watched as flies and creepers feasted on his broken and decaying right leg in the days after he fell into a 50-foot well, and was unconscious for a period.
“I was drinking, so I leave Payne’s Bay and went into The Garden to go and visit some friends of mine, but I went into the wrong track and I just feel myself like going down. I thought it was just like a little short hole and I said I would climb out tomorrow when I get up. Apparently when I gained consciousness the next morning, I was down in a well,” he recalled.
Moore said he shouted for help for several days to no avail. He said things got to a point where, during bouts of hallucination, he felt people had come to his rescue but the harsh reality would return soon enough.
The Payne’s Bay, St James resident was living in “hell” for endless days, and had made up in his mind that he was going to die. Moore said he even took steps to hasten the process on the ninth day by trying to catch a frog who was sharing a space with him in the well to drink the poisonous milk from its back.
“Even though my hand could get to that frog, my hand won’t go to that frog. My hand like stick and I keep reaching at this frog and this voice came to my head as plain as it is now, I can still remember. This voice tell me ‘they that wait on the Lord shall renew their strength. I let the frog lone,” he said.
It would be two more days before a saviour came in the form of Neville “Boots” Babb. The date was September 22, which is another landmark Moore celebrates.
Babb was clearing cow itch from near the well and Moore said he called out to Babb, who was about to toss the bush into the well. He said they had a brief exchange before help was sought.
“He run, went down the street and he called the police, and he called the fire truck, called the ambulance. That’s where they find me and take me out. They take me and carry me to the hospital.
“First, I was in there for about three months because they had to do operations on my foot. They had to take out bone from my hip and put it in my foot; they had to take out flesh, they had to do skin graphs. So I was in there for a little while,” Moore said matter-of-factly.
He was discharged but his treatment was not near finished. It took the intervention of a Canadian friend named Paul, who drove him to the hospital, and caused a stink for him to be readmitted.
“He said ‘this man is a hero, you know about Errol Barrow and all those people, but this man is a hero. He was in a well for 11 days and survive. You should tend to he’. They admitted me right away and I spent another four months in the hospital,” the retired fisherman said, adding that the doctors told him that he would never walk again.
That was another odd he willed himself to defy.
“I would get up early in the morning and pray to God and ask God to heal my foot, ’cause these doctors said that I ain’t going walk again. When I start walking I went back to the hospital [and] all the doctors get up and run down through a room and tell the rest of doctors ‘come and see who walking’, like them couldn’t believe I was walking,” he said with a broad smile.
Today Moore stands relatively tall and limps on the right leg that was injured in the fall. He is unable to use his left arm because of injuries sustained in a vehicular accident prior to 2004, but Moore is up and about and continues to run his business on the beach with assistance from one employee. They rent umbrellas and chairs to visitors, which subsidised the fishing up until about three years ago.
Moore admits that the prayers are not as earnest these days compared to when he was in the well awaiting rescue, or even during the recovery period.
“I knew in my heart that Jesus exists, and I knew that God was going to heal me. I couldn’t come to the decision that somebody would got to help me at my age. I never give up,” he said.
Moore said he has not been to church in a while “but I still know that He still loves me, and I still know that He still exists”.
That said, he would be the first to admit that he did not take in the lessons from the two accidents.
“I can’t say I learn anything ’cause I still doing the same things. I still drinking the alcohol . . . . I like I drinking it even more now than before,” Moore said with a hearty laugh.
There will be a celebration for some of his family and friends today as has become the norm, and another one on September 22.
His 57th birthday falls on November 27, three days before Barbados celebrates 50 and, like the rest of the country, he is looking forward to the historic occasion. By that time a new Timothy Moore should have emerged.
“I’m looking forward to make a different change in my life, and this change I want to make in my life is to live for God,” he said soberly.
It will be no holds barred on November 27th if he lives to see it, though.
“I gine celebrate fuh muh birthday, and after that day I want to make a new change,” Moore pledged. (YB)