Near death, he saw towering Angels

“For He will give His angels charge of you, to guard you in all your ways. On their hands they will bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone.” -Psalm 91:11-12

This is a true story of what happened to Darren Mooneyham of Texas one very early morning in January, 2010, as recounted by Jon Mark Beilue, a columnist for the Amarillo Globe News.


by Jon Mark Beilue, January 10, 2012

Darren Mooneyham, like many who creep into their 40s, felt that mid-life void and wondered what it all meant, where he was headed, as he and wife Kristal raised two children in a Christian home. He had sold his successful fishing lure company, Mad Man Lures, in 2006, but the hustle and excitement then seemed to vanish.

“At the end of the day, I’m thinking, ‘Man, is this it?’” he said. “Is this all there is to life, just the mundane day-to-day grind, doing the same thing over and over?”

He delved into the scriptures and discovered wise old Solomon at one point felt exactly the same way.

“Even though I was fairly successful at what I had done,” he said, “I’m still thinking, am I valuable? Is there more to life than I think there is?”

The answer was a resounding yes, though it took a horrific wreck and a hospital room visit by angels for him to know that. The first is easily provable, and the second Mooneyham knows to be true, and he couldn’t care less if you think he’s crazy.

Mooneyham, who played football at Tascosa, Panhandle State, Abilene Christian and West Texas A&M, was good enough to bass fish on and off professionally in his younger years.

On Dec. 12, 2009, he took friend Will Bivins, son of late state Sen. Teel Bivins, on a fishing trip to Falcon Lake. About 15 miles south of San Angelo, a welding truck going north had a blowout and went careening into Mooneyham’s one-ton Dodge truck and 20-foot boat that were heading south.

The man in the other truck was killed, and the passenger critically injured. Bivins was able to walk out of a San Angelo hospital an hour later. As for Mooneyham, his left side was basically crushed. He shattered his femur, tibia, fibula, hip and ankle and nearly severed his left arm.

San Angelo doctors induced a coma and essentially saved his leg before he was airlifted to Baylor Medical Center in Dallas four days later. He had been at Baylor about a month, gone through five surgeries and was beginning rehab and slow progress.

Then he developed a staph infection and had to go back into surgery. He remembers being very depressed, very frustrated, when a bright light flooded his room around 2 a.m. on a January 2010 night.

You can choose to believe the rest or not. It matters not to Mooneyham, who is about as down-to-earth and level-headed as they come.

“I could paint a picture of them right now,” Mooneyham told a small group of men last week.

He saw eight angels, four on the left near the foot of his bed, four on the right. They were 7 feet tall, with one’s head even with the mounted television on the wall. He said they were dressed like Roman warriors, with huge arms, breastplates, and wings tucked tightly behind them.

“I pinched myself to make sure I was awake,” Mooneyham said. “I said, ‘My name is Darren.’ One of the leaders sort of looked at the other one, and then looked back at me, and I thought, ‘I guess you know that.’ They never said another word, and I went back to sleep.”

A dream, you say. A painkiller-induced haze, maybe. Or actually angels among us.

“I was never skeptical,” said Kristal, an Amarillo realtor, “because Darren is not the type to ever tell something that vividly and be so overwhelmed and convinced of God’s protection if he’s not 100 percent sure.”

The experience, he said two years later, was as real as hugging his son Brock in the morning. He knows what he saw.

“My wife would watch those ghost hunter shows and I’d go, ‘bull,’” he said. “I would be the last person who you would think would see something like that. But I was there, I was awake, and it was real as me talking to you.”

The experience immediately changed Mooneyham — his attitude, his personality, his ambition. The message he takes is one of protection.

“So many times we’re not in control,” he said. “It’s like we’re here, fighting for you. The message was, ‘don’t let your puny mind think we’re not.’”

The wreck necessitated 14 surgeries, three months of rehab at Baylor and nine more in Amarillo. He spent nine months wearing an Ilizarov frame on his leg, an external fixator with rings attached to bone and rods that stretch the leg.

Now, Mooneyham said he still has a “pretty good limp” but doesn’t even take ibuprofen. His left forearm gets tired and his fingers sometimes numb, but that’s it.

His purpose, he’s convinced, is to glorify God and his kingdom. The accident, he said, God didn’t cause, but allowed. And two years later, he’s better because of it.

“I never asked why it happened, and that may seem weird,” Mooneyham said. “Sometimes I wish God would just give me an outline. But I know I’m here for a reason, and I know what that reason is. And the thing is, we don’t know the hour or the minute. We’re not here very long. We’re just a vapor.”

Jon Mark Beilue is a columnist for the Amarillo Globe-News. He can be reached at or 806-345-3318. His blog appears on

12 responses to “Near death, he saw towering Angels

  1. I’ve read many stories like this and I’m always intrigued why there are not more of them.


  2. We need to believe people when they do tell of their near death experiences, healing & other experiences where members of the Heavenly Host make their presence known to us. Many people keep these experiences to themselves because they feel they’ve had a very “sacred” and life-changing event occur, and also, don’t want anyone second-guessing an experience they KNOW was real !
    I have been with those who are passing from this world, who made known they had a faith and love of the Lord, and have personally observed the sudden smiles & gazes in recognition toward someone by their beds that I couldn’t see-but it was obvious they did. Some uttered a name, one said “it’s so beautiful”; I have seen an expression of peace that was unlike anything I can describe. Nothing that can be explained away scientifically, I want to tell you.
    To deny that there are those present to help us on that journey into our new life is denying volumes of research regarding near death experiences, collectected over many decades. This is no “fairy tale” –it’s very real.
    I can say that my personal observations have strenghtened my faith, and I do not fear death-it’s a transition to a better “life”. God’s word is something you can cling to-no matter how we depart this world, we are not going to be alone. I pray that everyone reading this will simply “trust”, have that faith of a small child, and may God bless every single one of you .


  3. God is always in control!

    I believe him. Lifechanging for sure.


  4. What this man says is definitely true. I had similar experiences when, at age 39, I suffered three different cardiac arrests.


  5. I totally believe this man had the exact experience he describes. The size of the angels is a dead give-away (pardon the pun). I thank him for sharing this as his story has strengthened me.


  6. I’ve also witnessed this type of individual (no Faith or hope) in passing, there is a stark contrast in their last minutes—. Fright, desperation, anger. I am being honest–not trying to scare people into being Believers & having Faith. My intention is not to preach–I just have had some profound observations in being with very sick, and, dying patients. It has eliminated all doubts or concerns that I’ve ever had. I thank God that He has many ways of showing us that we truly have nothing to fear.


  7. I feel that this really did occur. I am reading this event on a day when I have begun to search for information on St. Michael in order to plead for his help. There is no doubt in my mind that I had to read this story in order to put me in the mind place where I now have to be in order to survive. Thank you for posting this revelation.


  8. 46 years ago my wife and I lost our fourth child due to hospital neglect! after the C-Section the Dr. came to me and told me that my wife and my new baby boy had died, they were able to revive my wife but couldn’t save the baby. I never told my wife what the Dr. had said, 18 years later while driving home from a visit with some friends of ours (while there, they had talked about life after death), My wife said I died when Anthony was born! I ask her how she knew and she related this story to me. During surgery sometime she woke up and was in the most beautiful, peaceful place any person could ever imagine, didn’t see anyone so she started walking and after a little bit it was over and she didn’t remember anything until she woke up in the recovery room, knowing she had died! You will never make me believe, there isn’t life after death of this body here on this earth!


  9. Pingback: The Death of Voltaire | The Road

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