'Part of the healing process’: Survivors of explosion get matching tattoos

Explosion survivors get matching tattoos

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - It was a freak accident that left its mark on Jennifer Yolton, Bobby Rolfes and Robyn Chandler after a propane explosion in the Cary St. Cafe food truck last April.

“I have to look at my legs every single day,” Chandler said. “The scars themselves are a reminder that we lived through it.”

But these old wounds taught the trio a valuable lesson.

“If I got through that, I can get through whatever life hands me, and that’s powerful,” Yolton said.

Now healed, this group is rising above the fire by getting marks of a different kind.

“It’s part of the healing process in a way,” Rolfes said.

The three friends wrote the last chapter of their recovery story in permanent black ink Friday, deciding to get matching tattoos at Heroes and Ghost Tattoo’s in Carytown.

They chose to get flame tattoos on their legs near their scars.

“We’re commemorating the survival of the accident,” Chandler said.

Chandler and Yolton said at times the tattoos were painful, but it’s nothing compared to the actual flames they endured.

“We’re thriving - all of us,” Chandler said. “Jen started a new business, Bobby bought a house, my food truck is thriving.”

Rolfes opted out of getting a real tattoo instead choosing to support his friends as they go.

“I think I’ll leave my scars the way they are,” Rolfes said.

But Rolfes did have the tattoo artists draw a small flame design on the back of his leg with a sharpie marker.

Chandler hopes these inked flames will forever link these three by more than just their scars.

“It’s not going to get the best of us, and it didn’t get the best of any of us," Chandler said.

Chandler says the food truck will be featured on “Carnival Eats” on the Food Network later this year.

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