As we watched, helpless to do anything else, we saw the police helicopter's blade get hit with a blast of bullets and witnessed the helicopter hit the corner of the barn. Then it landed on the ground near the barn like a wounded bird. Fortunately, it didn't burst into flames, but we couldn't tell if the people inside the copter were still alive or dead. It did, however, spill some gasoline on the barn, and with all the bullets whizzing, the barn caught fire.
We could see from the vantage point of the television station's helicopter the other side of the barn where the police copter had crashed. It looked like the occupants of the downed copter were getting out, but one was being carried out.
As we listened to Tanya's commentary, we heard her say, "Someone is coming out of the barn; he's crawling on his knees and then rolling. Is he on fire? It's hard to tell from here. Why is only one person coming out? Others are still firing bullets from the inside. Folks, it looks like it's going to be a while before we know what all is happening. Uh-oh, the SWAT team is headed in now. They have full gear, including helmets, and there they go!"
Oh, man! It was a nail-biter, for sure. All we could do was just sit there and watch and pray. We were sure doing plenty of that.
"Someone from the helicopter is coming over to the person who came out of the barn. They're helping him to his feet and walking him over to one of the police cruisers. It looks like they're giving him first aid of some kind. We don't know yet if it's someone who gave himself up or what.
"Okay, folks, you can probably hear the hail of bullets coming from inside the barn. It sounds like those inside are putting up quite a fight, doesn't it? Uh - oh! There seems to be deadly silence coming from the building now. Sam, take the helicopter down, now, would you? I think it is safe to get closer to the action now."
Well, it looked like our own little news woman was going to be first to get the story, and we, like all the rest of our town, were right there with her. We all knew she had ambitions to escape what she thought of as a one-horse town, and with this story under her belt, she might just make it.
We saw the news copter land near the other one, and saw Tanya Jane head over to the police car to interview the person who crawled out of the barn.
When we saw the person lift their head, we knew at once it was our own Jack, but what had happened to him? His face was all bruised up with a cut over one of his eyes, and his nose was bloodied. How in the world did he ever wind up out there?
We began whooping and hollering, and thanking God that Jack was alive. Then we were all crying, to boot, and smiling through our tears.
But what about the men who had gone inside the barn? What about Lt. Shannon? I knew he must have been leading those who went into the barn. Nobody had come out since they had gone in.
We turned again to the TV to hear more of Tanya's commentary.
(To be continued)