Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Look for the helpers

Iconic Mr. Rogers suggested that children "look for helpers" amidst tragedy.  While I am grateful to be holding Baby Joseph in my arms these past few days, and thankful that he is too young to understand the Newtown Shootings or the Boston Marathon Bombings, I do think about how I will explain these catastrophes when the time comes. 

I appreciate Mr. Rogers advice.  "Look for the helpers."  It is simple enough for a young child to understand but poignant enough for us adults to remember, as well.   In the wake of senseless tragedy, it is easy to become anxious, afraid, resentful, or angry.  But when we look to the multitude of heroes, instead of the lone coward, we remember the world is good.

Carlos Arredondo is the grieving father of two lost sons.  His older son died while serving in Iraq and his younger son subsequently took his own life, unable to cope with the loss of his beloved brother.  Carlos attended the Boston Marathon to support runners who were representing his fallen son.   He wore buttons with the pictures of both of his boys.   When the blast went off, Carlos ran toward the bombing.  He used his own clothing to tie a tourniquet around the legs of a victim and get him on a wheelchair.   We will never know whether that victim would have survived without Carlos' interference.

Carlos was born in Costa Rica.  He had since become a US Citizen.  He is an American hero in every sense of the word.