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"I remember hitting the steering wheel," Tyson says. "It felt like someone had taken a baseball bat and hit me on [the right] side of my face. I fell back into my seat and it was such a shock. I didn't know what happened and I wasn't moving. Then I figured, 'Okay, I'm dead.'"

Tyson was indeed alive, but far from safety.

"I saw the flames coming out of the engine of my car," he says. "The engine was up to my leg, because it got pushed in about three feet and it cut my leg. I was saying to myself, 'The flames are getting bigger. Maybe you should get out.' But my body wasn't moving. I knew something was broken but didn't know what. My physical didn't want to move, but my spiritual just said, 'You know what? I'm going to have to do this for all of us.' And then I pushed the door open and fell out of the truck and looked back at the flaming truck and [it exploded]. And the further I got away from it, the taller the flames got. It was like it was waiting for me to get out and then it just went up."

Tyson says this near-death experience was almost unreal. "It was just like a movie," he says. "I felt like an action hero as I was running away. And I kept saying to myself, 'I can't believe this is happening to me.' Like, 'Am I on set?'"
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FROM: Gay for 30 Days
Published on October 20, 2005

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