SAN ANTONIO – You’ve heard the phrase a picture is worth a thousand words.
This past year, there’ve been plenty of pictures in our newscasts that have said a whole lot.
At the same time, some of those images momentarily left me speechless, particularly those that I saw while covering news for Good Morning San Antonio.
While we have sadly witnessed more than our share of death and destruction in 2022, I wanted to revisit some stories that have had no human costs associated with them.
What follows is my personal list of some of the most shocking sights this year.
Frightful flames engulf notable businesses on several occasions
In four different incidents, we saw fire swallow up businesses that were practically San Antonio landmarks, and light up the skies with frightening flames.
In March, people all across the city were devastated to learn that Jacala Mexican restaurant, a local foodie favorite since the 1940s, had burned to the ground.
The huge fire raged on for hours, despite the determined efforts of San Antonio fire crews.
One month later, Guardian Angel daycare, a staple for parents on the South side, also fell to flames.
The fire, though, did not destroy the spirit of its owner, and, as we reported a few months later, he was able to reopen in another site.
A building on the Northeast Side that once housed Midnight Rodeo nightclub was reduced to ashes in November, but only after it exploded into flames.
And in early December, drivers along Interstate 10 near Foster Road couldn’t help but notice the huge fireball that once had been Flying J truck stop.
The regular resting place for big rig drivers burned down due to a fire that started in the kitchen of an adjoining Denny’s restaurant.
Two different incidents involving freight trains created curious sights.
A pickup was left almost unrecognizable after it collided with two freight trains that were parked on the tracks near Highway 90 and General Hudnell in May.
Police say the driver and a passenger somehow got free of the twisted metal and were able to run away.
Another train parked on the tracks near Quintana Road became like a prison for another man.
Firefighters had to go in and rescue him from a freight car where he had been trapped by a huge metal coil for more than 12 hours.
Fire crews told us he was a stowaway who secretly had boarded the train the previous day in Eagle Pass.
He was not seriously hurt.
Amazing Amazon crash:
Jaw-dropping only begins to describe the sight of an Amazon truck protruding from the front of a restaurant.
The driver apparently lost control of his big rig on a rain-slick section of Interstate 35 near AT&T Center Parkway.
He wasn’t hurt but hundreds of packages took a spill all over the parking lot after the collision opened up the truck like a sardine can.
One tough TV
It’s tough to tell if a West Side woman or her flat-screen television was in the right place at the right time.
She told us she was standing behind the TV at the time, and the bullet lodged in the back of it rather than in her body.
She believes the shooter had the wrong house.
A haunting impression
It has been more than two months since I first laid eyes on a doll named Sarah, but the memory of her still gives me chills.
The creepy blue-eyed doll, somehow sealed in a tiny coffin that only shows her face, is no children’s toy.
Her owner says Sarah is haunted and has been causing all kinds of supernatural activity within the walls of her North Side costume and collectibles shop.
Although these stories may not represent the biggest news of 2022, through their images, they have made a lasting impression on me.