SHIFANG, China — At the moment of greatest despair, Wang Zhijun tried to kill himself by twisting his neck against the debris. The ruins of the workers’ dormitory.Breathing had become harder as day turned to night. The chunks of brick and concrete that had buried him and his wife were pressing tighter by the hour, crushing them. Their bodies had gone numb.
Then there was the rain, sharp and cold, lashing at them through the cracks.
“I don’t think I can make it,” he told his wife, Li Wanzhi, his face just inches from hers, their arms wrapped around each other.
She sensed he was giving up. “If God wants to kill us, he would have killed us right away,” she said. “But since we’re still alive, we must be fated to live.”
And they lived. They were pulled from the rubble of their collapsed six-story workers’ dormitory 28 hours after last Monday’s earthquake, spared the end met by at least 32,000 others.
Their tale of survival is also one of a rekindled love, of two people who might have died had they been trapped alone.