James Long says the silhouette of an angel has appeared on his roof. And now everyone on the block is trying to figure out what to make of it - is it a miracle, or not?
Two retired brothers in Willard, Mo. believe their roof is home to a miracle-an angel's silhouette on their chimney.
Bob King said he first noticed the angel as he worked in his vegetable garden.
"My eyes come right straight up to that angel on the chimney and I was shocked," said King. "It's just marvelous."
King immediately told his brother, James Long, who didn't believe him.
"I said, 'Aw you been out in the heat too long," Long recounted.
Long and King told Robert, the little boy who lives down the street and walks their dog.
"They hollered at us to come look and we did," said Robert, "and we thought, 'Wow."
Robert told his grandmother, Sharon Miller.
"As soon as we got back here I could see immediately," she said.
That's how the story of the chimney's cherub began to spread throughout Willard,
"We thought that it was something, something that people would probably want to come and see," Long said.
The two brothers admitted that they don't attend church every Sunday. But they said they are religious and view the angel as a heavenly sign.
"I think of things like this as a possible miracle," King said. "If it's not it's the next best thing."
The darkened water and erosion stains on King and Long's chimney do resemble an angel. Nearly everyone can make out the wings and halo when the light hits the concrete smokestack just the right way.
King and Long have lived in the house for more than 30 years, but they only noticed the angel in early June.
"There's not a day I go by there when I don't look up and come back here and I want to make sure it's still there," King said.
Everyone who saw the angel seemed to derive a different meaning from it.
"I just like to be able to look up and see something on a chimney," Robert remarked.
"I just think it's a confirmation that we're always guarded," Miller agreed.
"I like to call it our guardian angel, watching over our block," Long said.
Despite Long's and King's claims of a miracle, the black stains on the chimney weren't enough to convince the neighbors of a miracle.
"I think it's just kind of there," Robert said.
"I don't think it's a miracle," his grandmother said.
But miracle or not, everyone in Willard seemed glad to catch a glimpse of King and Long's angel.
"If it's there for a reason, someday I'll know the reason," King said. "Until then I'd just like to see it and I'd like other people to come and see it."