Ken and Britt Black (MCA missionaries) and Jeff and Laura Wilhoit (PBT missionaries) were returning from Ivory Coast by road. They stopped at a waterfalls for lunch and got a local kid to guard their car. When they returned up the hill from the falls, they got to the car and found the guard tied up.

Soon they heard a noise and a man with an AK-47 jumped out and shot two shots into the air and demanded money. The missionares jumped behind the car and started trying to slip their wallets, etc… under the car.

Ken’s brother who was visiting from the States and is an ex-paratrouper couldn’t understand what the men were asking and kept talking back to them in English. At the same time, he was trying to divert attention from the several small kids that Blacks and Wilhoits have. In fact, Blacks were returning from having a baby girl in Abidjan. In any case, the gunman was getting frustrated with Ken’s brother and went up to him and at point blank range shot him in the chest. He felt the blast and looked down expecting to see blood. There was nothing.

About this time, a second man came out of the woods to help unload the car. They ordered everyone on the ground and began going through everything in the car. Camaras, laptops, suitcases, etc…. Britt Black, who was holding one of their children kept looking back. The gunman came up to her from behind and shot her in the back at point blank range. She felt the burst of air from the gun, but was not injured.

By this time, they all determined that the gun must have only blanks in it. As the men started down the road with everything they could carry, the missionaries determined that if the gun had blanks in it, that they could that these two guys. Ken, his brother and the new born (Ken forgot he was carrying the newborn) jumped in the car and headed after the two guys. The gunman turned and shot directly into the windshield. The could see the fire coming out of the barrel, but nothing happened.

When they got near the guys, they jumped out of the car and chased them on foot. They dropped everything about the time Ken’s brother tackled the man with the AK-47. They went rolling down the bank getting cut up by bamboo and branches. The gun came loose in the fall and Ken’s brother soon had this man in a headlock. In the fight, he saw Jeff’s binoculars around this man’s neck. He took the two sides of the strap and crossed them choking the man. He removed the binoculars and left the man there. When he got to the top of the bank, he looked back to see the man stumble off into the woods. The other man had run down the road and was also gone.

They collected their things and took the AK-47 gun with them the the police station to report the incident. When the Captain opened the chamber of the gun, he shook his head in disbelief. It was loaded with live bullets. The Lord spared them, no other answer. It is no wonder the gunmen were so scared when these two men came running after them. They had been shot and wouldn’t die.