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 Johnny Vincent West 
Johnny Vincent West

Born Into This World-December 18, 1958
Born Into Eternity-December 13, 1977

Click Here for Johnny's Class Memorial Page

The Story Behind The Picture

After working all day John was tired, he went to his room for some rest.  His family had recently moved to their present home and John had an unsettled feeling about the new place.  The house seemed creepy.  His room was in the basement but since the house was built on a hill his room was was above ground.   He laid down and closed his eyes and tried to fall asleep.

After a short time, he opened his eyes and saw a small dwarf like person with a horrifying and morbid face staring at him from outside his window.  The face oozed with evil, it's ugliness was indescribable.  It terrified him because he knew that it was a demon, the face frightened him so much that he could not bare to look upon it, he turned away.  

Later he would explain it as the "weirdest, scariest, ugliest thing" he'd ever seen, it permeated "evil".  Not knowing what to do he grabbed a knife and waved it in the window to attempt to scare it away.  

It seemed to have worked because he noticed that the gruesome reflection had disappeared.  For reasons that were not clear to him at the time, he got up and went outside.   To his horror he saw a group of them, twenty or more, dancing in front of him.  He was completely terrified and overcome with fear his entire body began to tremble, the ground started to move up and down and he felt himself collapse, everything went black.

Although John was both awake and conscience, he was unable to control what was happening.  He felt as if his body had been suctioned into a dark tunnel, he tried to pull himself out but he force was to strong.  Suddenly he realized that he was dying.  

The tunnel had a light at the end, and in it he heard peaceful sounds much like the laughter of children.  As he was being pulled through he tunnel he prayed "please God let me live-I will do anything".    Within moments he noted that he was at the end of the tunnel, and then suddenly he found himself back in his bed and there was smoke rising all around him.  He looked up and two of the demons were standing at the foot of his bed, once again they were staring at him.  He looked away and when he looked back the demons were gone.  

John was not the type of guy that was easily frightened.  During his lifetime he'd seemed to embrace the things that others would find fearful and scary.  He'd placed a six foot poster of Frankenstein at the foot of his bed when he was five, rarely missed the Saturday horror movie matinees, even seemed to find some pleasure in the eerie camping trips that he took at the cemetery with his friends.  But nothing in his life had ever scared him like the vision of the evil demons he'd just witnessed.  

In the days that followed he couldn't stop thinking of the horrifying experience.  It tormented his every moment.  He never believed it was a dream, he was certain it was more of a vision.  He told everyone about it.  He became more serious about things and we often found him deep thought.  As he explained the experience to his mother, he said "Mom, it wasn't a dream.  I was as awake then as I am right now!" 

Shortly after his experience, he went to church with his family.  In the past, going to church had not been something that he liked to do.   But he seemed to be struggling with what he thought was a premonition of his death and he wasn't able to shake the terror he was suffering within.  Besides he was to frightened to stay at the house alone, so on this Sunday he made no complaints about accompanying the family to church.  

During the service, the pastor made a peculiar statement.  He said "God has laid something on my heart, someone in this congregation will not live to see the end of the month.  I feel an urgent need to say that if anyone is not right with the Lord, that you should not delay".   The pastor then led the people in what is called "a prayer of salvation", he asked if anyone wanted to receive Jesus' free gift of salvation.  He offered that those who were interested could come forward.  But since by nature,  John was a very shy person- he didn't go.  His brother Joe watched however as John bowed his head to pray quietly to himself.  Joe believed that John had asked Jesus to come into his heart that day.  Joe couldn't help but notice that his older brother seemed more at peace after he'd prayed.  

Two months after his dream and two days after the church service John was tragically killed in an accident in front of the area where he'd seen the vision of demons dancing.  God loved him enough to allow him to be forewarned of where he was destined to go and with whom he'd be living with once he got there.

That event changed his life, or at least what was left of it.  God gave him the opportunity to change his eternal destination and we believe that he did just that.  His decision in church that day means that I will be seeing my brother again.

There is life after death, and God gives us two choices: Heaven or Hell.  I believe with all my heart that my brother John is in Heaven with God and with his Savior, Jesus because he had a glimpse of the evil demons of Hell.  

The picture above was taken on the day that he went to church, the day that we believe he made his peace with God.  After church, the family stopped at a store that had a photo booth.  He'd never liked having his picture taken before but on this day he insisted that it had to be done.  Joe was standing next to him and begged to be in the pictures with him but John wanted to be alone in the photographs.  

After he received the printed copies of the pictures Joe asked if he could have one, John replied "not yet, if I die I want people to have these". 

As you look at the picture above, remember that it is not a picture of a person who died and went to a dark destination filled with the faces of evil but of one who lives forever in the light of the Lord, because he made the right decision, to follow Jesus that day in church.  

God doesn't give everyone a glimpse of what their final destination is, nor does he allow us to see a vision to forewarn us that we are about to die.  Johnny was of sound mind, sober and awake when he got his vision.  He wouldn't have been so serious and so frightened in the aftermath if he hadn't been.  

Your eternal home is a serious decision that you should not delay in making.  Hell is your default destination, you don't have to do anything to go there.  But if you wish to make Heaven your final destination you will need to follow the directions that are outlined in the Holy Scriptures that requires us to repent from our sins and accept Jesus as our Savior.

Click here for more information on God's gift of Salvation through Christ Jesus. 

Johnny's Grave

Click here to follow the link to Johnny's grave.

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