'My nagging wife reply was to correct William's position in the car seat,' Boyer recounted.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on December 2, 2022. It has since been updated.
Rebecca Tafaro Boyer of Memphis told her husband David that she wanted "hourly updates and recaps" on how their 3-month-old baby William was adjusting to his first day away from his mother on her first day back to work following maternity leave. Throughout the day, David graciously texted status updates, one of which included a picture of William in his car seat during their trip to Walgreens. "My nagging wife reply was to correct William's position in the car seat," Boyer recounted in a July 2018 Facebook post. "The straps were too loose and the chest clip was way too low. And because I know my husband, I'm sure that he laughed at me and rolled his eyes before tightening the car seat and fixing the chest clip."
Boyer then shared that her husband called her to say, "Honey, we had a car wreck. We are fine, but the car is going to be totaled." The "nagging" text from Rebecca that led to the proper use of the car seat is what ended up saving baby William's life.
"My precious little bundle of joy was so well restrained in his car seat THAT HE DIDN'T EVEN WAKE UP. Even with the impact of the two cars, William only received a minor jolt — so insignificant that he was able to continue on with his nap, and then spend the next two hours flirting with nurses in the Le Bonheur ED," she shared in the post. Boyer revealed that her husband wasn't as fortunate: he was on crutches and had three shattered bones in his foot and three dislocated toes. She added that although the car is a total loss, "cars can be replaced — my boys can't."
Boyer told TODAY that she wanted to emphasize the fact that car seats do save lives and that all infants should ride in the backseat of a car. "I am so thankful that my husband took the extra one minute that was necessary to put William in his car seat safely. I can't even begin to imagine how different the outcome could have been," Boyer wrote. "I truly believe that the reason my family is at home sitting on the couch with a pair of crutches instead of down at the hospital is because of my annoying nagging mom voice."
Boyer explained that she made the post public in response to a request from her friends to let them tell their acquaintances about her experience. She described herself as being "shocked" when the post gained more than 45,000 shares. "I will just never forget the feeling I had when I pulled up to the scene of the accident and saw with my own eyes that they were OK," Boyer said, adding that she wanted to share that feeling of gratitude.
Boyer revealed that once the Britax BSafe 35 car seat was identified as the one that saved William's life by readers, the manufacturer reached out to inquire about a free replacement (once a car seat is in an accident, it cannot be used again). Boyer explained that while she and her husband appreciated the gift, their insurance company had already allowed them to replace their Britax car seat with another one.
Instead, Boyer said, she urged Britax to donate a car seat to the Memphis, Tennessee-based Forrest Spence Fund, a charity that assists families of children with severe or chronic diseases with basic needs. "Our old damaged car seat will be donated to the NICU at Le Bonheur Children's Hospital so it can be used to educate new parents on how to safely and properly secure their newborns," she wrote.
It all worked out well, except for her husband. "My husband says, 'I'm never going to live this down, am I?'" Boyer said laughing.