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This is a re-post from Jamie Getz, someone I admire tremendously, who has ties to my home scene of the Lehigh Valley PA. His band Gods and Queens is currently in Europe touring and I know this is going to sound like one of those scam letters from Africa but here goes:
I´m going to try and make this as short as I can. After all these years of touring in unsafe vans, and doing stupid things, I guess I was over due for this... We had a serious van accident in route from our show in Graz, Austria to Dresden, Germany, somewhere along the highway in the Czech.
I was asleep in the back of the van, so I'm unsure of what exactly happened. All I know is I felt the van skidding out and we started to slide and roll over. Not sure exactly how many times the van flipped but it was more than enough. I started screaming for everyone to tell me they were OK. Gertjan check, Ben check, Sara check, and I didn't hear Jeff.
Ben pulled me out through the windshield and I took off running, screaming for help with blood pouring down my face. I honestly though Jeff was dead. A car stopped and a slew of women started screaming at me and I was screaming at them. We were in the middle of no where and as I was running two things came to mind, I think Jeff is dead, and I hope I don´t get shot like Artimus Pyle. A woman pulled me into her house and her husband and son ran to the van crash site. I found Gertjan, and he said everyone is OK. The family started talking to me via Google Translation telling me everyone is safe and that an ambulance is on the way.
(what is left of the van)
The ambulance comes, takes us to a hospital, we get taken care of...sort of. The police arrive on the scene and inform us that we aren´t leaving until the medical bills are paid in full. They were kind enough to escort Sara and myself to an ATM machine to pay the entire lump of the bills in full on the spot. Even after we signed some strange papers saying we have 30 day with proof of citizenship, etc. What the f*!@ ever right? We asked where Gertjan was, and their response was...prison. 300 phone calls and around €3,000 later we are out of the damned Czech and safe in Germany.
Long short, we are all somewhat OK. Jeff broke his collarbone, Ben got his hand jacked up, I am pretty alright, Gertjan is OK, as well as Sara. The van is destroyed. Booking these tours our self really made me realize that we are 100% on our own. We had no one to call, no one to "rescue" us. I made 3 phone calls and the entire German punk scene came to our rescue. God damn thank you. Our new friends from Dresden Germany came to get us at the drop of a hat, no questions asked. Thank you.
So here it is, we are 3 grown adult males in our 30´s who play in a punk band. We are all stage hands at R5 Productions in Philly. That's what we do to enable us to be here in Europe doing this. Never in our lives have we needed help like we do now. If you want to help us, please go to www.godsandqueens.bandcamp.com and purchase a record for $1.99. If you ever laughed at one of my awful jokes, or spent hours talking with us after a show, and you would like to help, please do. I always thought our band would have too much pride to ask for help, but I am pretty sure we all agree that this time we need it. If you would like to help in any form please do jamiegetz(at)gmail.com is the paypal address if you are inclined to do so. We will also accept first class upgrades on US Air, Delta or Virgin.