MAPLEWOOD, Minn. - Each year his son grows older, Ben Hickman gets a reminder of how it almost ended before Jackson was born.
The candles on Jackson Hickman's birthday cake each year measure the years that have passed since the 35W bridge collapse.
His mom, Tina Hickman, was eight months pregnant when she drove onto the bridge on her way to book club that hot evening, August 1, 2007.
RELATED: Survivor stories: Tina Hickman
Thirteen people died on the day that many people wish they could forget. But Tina couldn't remember if she wanted to.
“I have retrograde amnesia. So I don't remember anything from all of August 1st until the 29th of that month,” Tina said.
Looking at photos of where her car landed only cements her belief that Jackson is their miracle baby.
“That's only God's hand that was his decision that was not Jackson and my day to die that day,” Hickman said.
Tina was rescued and brought to HCMC. There, as his mother lay in a coma, Jackson was saved.
“Just an hour after the bridge collapsed, thankfully, he was delivered via emergency C-section that day,” Hickman said.
As August 1 approaches, many will mark the 10th anniversary of one of the worst days in Minneapolis history.
The Hickmans will celebrate life.
“He turns 10 on Tuesday and that's what we look at August 1st as, every year. And this year will look no different,” Tina said.
And with each birthday, the youngest survivor of the 35W bridge collapse grows more aware of how fortunate his family is.
“It's just a miracle that I get to be alive right now. I'm just lucky to have a birthday. To be alive,“ Jackson Hickman said.
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