On April 6, 22-year-old Rebecca Sperry was due to have labor induced and give birth to her first child with husband Jesse, 23. The Indiana couple set out that morning to go to church and run errands, but that afternoon an SUV—driven by an off-duty cop thought by police to be on drugs—appeared in their rearview mirror going an estimated 92mph. It hit them from behind, flipping the car over and sending it into a utility pole. Jesse's final act was to reach for his wife, Rebecca tells the Herald Bulletin. He died in the crash, and a seriously injured Rebecca gave birth to Autumn Marie via an emergency C-section. Amazingly, the baby was unhurt—and Sperry forgives the driver, who faces a reckless homicide charge, "completely," she tells WRTV.
Now Rebecca, who couldn't hold her baby for the first week as she recovered from her injuries, is getting back on her feet while living with her parents. Almost $24,000 has been raised for medical and funeral expenses (one single mom purchased everything on Rebecca's Walmart registry, WTHR reports). Rebecca is focusing on her memories of Jesse—the sweatshirt that still smells like him, the vase full of all the roses he gave her during their relationship, which started in high school—and her faith. "The nurses were great. They recommended I read my Bible," she says. "It gave me strength to go on. It reminded me that God has a purpose for us. ... He’s still there for us. His purpose didn’t end with Jesse."