In the worst thing that could possibly ever happen to a parent, one father was forced to choose which of his children to spend his final moments with.
Sure this scenario sounds like it has come straight out of a Hollywood disaster movie but it happened in real life to one man last night.
The idea of being forced to choose is simply too distressing to even think about but this father had only seconds to make the decision as he believed his family were in danger.
Last night the unnamed father’s eldest child, wife and his two youngest kids were in three different locations with distance between them all.
This of course wouldn’t normally be a problem but as he received a warning about a ballistic missile that was en route to hit Hawaii everything changed.
The alert read simply:
BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.
Although the message turned out to be a false alarm caused by a government employee hitting the wrong button, for a full 38 minutes there was absolute terror.
This morning my daughter was 20 miles away at my moms &all I could tell her as she was crying was I love her & I’m so sorry… I would never wish this feeling on anyone. Traumatized. #Hawaii #HawaiiMissle #misslethreat #realStress pic.twitter.com/GMtpJCHGX4
— Aisha Lindsey (@aikudeesh) January 14, 2018
Believing that they had only minutes to live, hundreds of people on the island sent goodbye messages to loved ones and made heartbreaking decisions about how to spend their last moments alive.
After the chaos was over, this dad shared his story on social media writing:
Right now I’m in tears on pulled over on Bishop St.
The adrenaline is just now leaving my system. Just five mins before the ballistic missile warning I dropped my eldest at the airport and drove to Nimitz Zippys.
There I found out about the threat and had to decide whether to shelter there, drive to my two younger children at home, go back to the airport or go be with my wife at work.
None of these destinations were within 15 minutes of where I was.
I chose to go home to the two little ones – I figured it was the largest grouping of my family – knowing I likely wouldn’t make it home in time.
I was tearing up South Street to the freeway when I heard it was a mistake.
F*** you Hawaii Civil Defence.
Someone was definitely in trouble last night for the massive screw-up.
The dad’s story was shared by Gene Park on Twitter who wrote:
My friend in Hawaii got the alert and had to quickly choose between which members of his family he would spend his last moments on Earth with because they were ALL too far apart from each other.
He had to make the difficult choice of going immediately to his youngest children.
My friend in Hawaii got the alert and had to quickly choose between which members of his family he would spend his last moments on Earth with because they were ALL too far apart from each other. He had to make the difficult choice of going immediately to his youngest children. pic.twitter.com/n8LNPiVscP
— Gene Park (@GenePark) January 13, 2018
It must have been horrific but I can’t help but wonder what the eldest child thought of his decision?
Emily Murray is a journalist at UNILAD. She graduated from the University of Leeds with a BA in English Literature and History before studying for a Masters in Journalism at the University of Salford. Emily has previously worked for the BBC, ITV and Trinity Mirror. When Emily isn’t writing about topics including mental health and entertainment, you can find her at the cinema which is her second home.