On the lovely spring afternoon of April 20, 2018, a backyard tree cracked, and a heavy limb fell. 12-year-old Evelyn suffered a devastating blow to her head as she shielded her puppy. A significant, compressed skull fracture required emergency neurosurgery. This freak, life-threatening event shook the Overlease family to the core, and an unbelievable experience was instantly set in motion that may take a lifetime to fully understand.
The astounding details surrounding Evelyn’s accident, medical care, and recovery are crazier than fiction. First-time author Julie Overlease tells the story in close detail, with frankness and honesty. This is a book of hope and miracles, in which Evelyn’s mother tells a story of faith in action during a time of crisis, of prayer through pain and darkness, of devoted friendship, and the great goodness and love of God.
Twelve-year-old Evelyn Overlease’s freak injury resulting in a traumatic brain injury became the occasion for a deepened faith for her parents, family and friends. This is the story of faithful parental love, of a community of faith surrounding a hurting family with compassion, care and prayers, and ultimately a testimony of hope in God’s providence. This memoir chronicles how, for the person of faith, God provides many consolations and signs of his love in the midst of the unexpected and terrifying storms of life. —Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, Archbishop of Kansas City in Kansas
We all love movies with heroes—champions who are bigger than life. But in the real world the real heroes usually go unnoticed. This is a story of real heroism—heroism of the best kind. In Overlease’s emotional story you find family and friends who cling to God and their Catholic faith in a demonstration of true virtue and valor. Expect to be blessed. —Steve Ray, author, founder of CatholicConvert.com
Julie Overlease's Hope Upon Impact testifies, like soldiers restarting their lives returning from war, that it's not the tragedy that strictly determines the outcome of events, but how we react. Overlease's often inspiring account of love, community, and faith in a beneficent God is not only a joy to read, but vividly portrays the interplay of the saving power of all three, separate roots to the Tree of Life. The truth is, it's not important in the final analysis what the tragedy was. Whether you are a person of deep faith or an atheist, you can't help but admire, be humanly moved and inspired by the outcomes. If strength overcoming terrifying adversity can illuminate life's most meaningful path forward, Overlease's faithful journey will shine a beacon through the jungle, right after you wipe the tears of pain, gratitude, and joy from your eyes. —Rabbi Mark H. Levin, DHL, Founding Rabbi of Congregation Beth Torah (Overland Park, KS)