The main character in this story is my good friend Steve Hooks. The song I wrote,
"I'll Be Over For Dinner At Eight",
and this narrative are my tribute and eulogy to Steve and his girlfriend Julie.
I first met Steve in 1980 at my Hot Rod shop in Visalia CA, Fenders & Heads. He came
in looking for work and an opportunity to be involved in a drag racing operation. He
soon became the crewchief for my Ford powered dragster, "Hot Diggity", a position he
held until I quit racing in 1985. Steve also worked for me as a cylinder head builder and
was one of my best employees, with the record of never having a "Come-Back" that was
In the course of our daily activities I was able to lead Steve to a saving knowledge of
Jesus Christ, and he began attending church with my wife and I. In 1985 Steve suffered
a debilitating brain tumor which left him partially disabled, a situation which continued
until 1995 when he was finally able to return to the work force at a local machine shop.
I don't really know how Steve met Julie, and because of her work hours I never met
Julie in person, but I know from conversations with Steve, that Julie was a devout Christian
and that Steve truly loved her. However, there was a problem, a person with considerable
influence in her life was opposed to their getting married. This person went so far as
to say that Julie "Could do a lot Better" than Steve, even though this person had never
Julie had a son who was a crew man on a professional Fuel Funny Car, but his career in
Drag Racing was cut short when he suffered a fatal heart attack at a young age. About a
month later Julie suffered the same fate. On the day Julie died she was to have had a
dinner date that night with Steve which her death didn't allow her to keep. Steve tried
calling her home, but got no answer, then about a week later he found her obituary in the
About a month after Julie died, Steve came by our house and told me about this dream
he'd had that morning. He said that Julie came into his room and told him she'd be over
for dinner at eight. He awoke with a start because the dream was so real, he said he could
even smell her perfume. I commented that maybe that was a date he didn't want to keep, but
he got this strange look on his face and said "Maybe this is a date I DO want to keep".
I believe at that moment Steve made the conscious decision that he was willing to die for
Julie, and it seems that God took him up on it.
About a year later Steve suffered a injury at work which led to his being paralyzed from
the chest down. He spent several months in therapy being prepared for his situation as a
paraplegic. When he finally came home he went to his sisters house until the
handicapped conversion of his house was finished. He spent one day at his sisters house,
but got sick, when he went to the ER it was really too late, because it was found that he had a
serious infection that proved fatal. His time of death was 7:59 PM. He kept his dinner
date with Julie at eight.
In Matthew, Chapter 6, the Lord commanded us to pray in this manner:
9: After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
10: Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
Through "Spiritual Legalism" God's will for Steve and Julie was prevented from
happening on earth, so God just took them both, in this way His will would be accomplished in