LETTER: ‘Let us give thanks for those who rush in every day…’


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[EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a Letter to the Editor, written by a Reader:]

Dear Editor,

I hardly ever watch any news as I have two small boys that I want to stay innocent awhile longer. However, I was at the mall and went past a TV with news coverage of the bombing of the Boston Marathon. What another scary tragedy and my heart goes out to the families and the victims. It is hard to see anything redeeming in a tragedy like that, it has been easy in the past for me to be angry and scared of human nature and wonder about the world my kids are growing into. Today, as I watched the video, I saw something beautiful in the midst of the tragedy-people running toward the bomb sites. Police officers, medical personnel, volunteer marathon helpers, National Guardsmen and some ordinary citizens running to the blast, pulling the fences and walls down to get to the injured, to save who they could. Most people run away-this is a normal part of human nature. Let us give thanks for those who rush in every day to save our fellow man in the danger zones of our city, state, country, world. I am angry, I want this world to be safe for my kids. But, my faith in mankind is renewed as I watched these brave men and women rush in to save fellow men, women and children. My prayers to those who are injured and to the families to those who are dead.

Kimberlee Yeargin, MD
Emergency Medicine
Loyal B Town Blog Reader

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Comments

3 Responses to “LETTER: ‘Let us give thanks for those who rush in every day…’”
  1. Lee Moyer says:

    Good point. But untrained volunteers can’t do much compared to those with some training. I’ve even seen a well meaning people do a bad things in an emergency. For those who care there are numerous classes in first aid, advanced first aid, CPR, Community Emergency Response Training (CERT), etc. If one’s concern lasts longer than a given headline, this is how to become involved.

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  2. elizabeth2 says:

    Lee – I think you are perhaps being a bit of a harsh pessimist. Please see this article from the Boston Globe…
    “By Amy Langfield and Bill Briggs, NBC News

    A retired football player carried a wounded woman from the Boston Marathon finish line. A father who lost both his sons, one in Iraq and one by suicide, rushed to aid the fallen. A veteran turned the shirt off his back into a bandage. A surgeon from Kansas finished the race and then started removing shrapnel from other runners.

    Besides the first responders, who are trained to help, there were countless other bystanders, race volunteers and runners who have become the faces of heroism in the aftermath of the two blasts Monday that killed three people and wounded at least 176 more.

    “Here we know our neighbors. We grieve for them,” Boston Mayor Thomas Menino said at a Tuesday morning news conference. “We know our heroes also. They’re the men and women who wear the helmets, who wear the badges, the runners who helped us yesterday during this time of need.”

    Even one of Boston’s big beloved “Pats,” New England Patriots’ retired offensive guard Joe Andruzzi, was captured on camera carrying a woman to safety after the explosions.

    As often happens with people who rush in to help, he doesn’t think of himself as a hero.

    “Marathon Monday should be about uplifting stories, personal challenges and fundraising milestones, but today’s bombings irrevocably changed that,” he said in a statement given to NBC News by the Joe Andruzzi Foundation.

    Andruzzi, whose brothers are New York firefighters who worked 9/11, is also a survivor of non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He was attending the marathon because his cancer foundation was participating in the event.

    “While I appreciate the interest in hearing our perspective on today’s horrific events, the spotlight should remain firmly on the countless individuals — first responders, medics, EMTs, runners who crossed the finish line and kept on running straight to give blood, and the countless civilians who did whatever they could to save lives. They were the true heroes. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all those affected by this senseless tragedy,” he said.

    A man lays on the ground after two explosions went off near the finish line of the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013.

    Others were as reluctant to step into the spotlight. One is simply being referred to as “the man who gave the shirt off his back.”

    An active-duty service member, he was at the finish line as the bombs exploded Monday. He was photographed wrapping the red shirt he wore during the Boston Marathon around the bloody leg of a woman at the blast site. He does not want to be recognized. He wants only prayers for the victims.

    “That’s him: ‘This is not about me. Focus on what’s important.’ That’s just who he is,” said Larry Olson, spokesman for Team Red, White & Blue, a veterans advocacy group who had 17 participants in the marathon, including the man who offered his shirt to stop the woman’s bleeding.

    Others were at the marathon to work as support staff for the runners, but had no idea their duties would change so dramatically.

    Finish-line coordinator Tom Meagher was the first to reach a fallen runner after the initial blast. “I turned and saw a huge wave of smoke and glass coming at me, and I actually saw bodies flying, moving around, uncontrollable,” Meagher told Matt Lauer on TODAY on Tuesday.

    Until the blast hit, nothing seemed out of the ordinary, said Meagher, who has been working the Boston Marathon finish line for 17 years.

    Spectators and runners alike, if they escaped injury themselves, quickly jumped in to help.

    Dr. Allan Panter, a Florida emergency room physician was waiting for his wife to cross the finish line when he found himself standing about 20 to 30 feet from the first blast.

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  3. Lee Moyer says:

    Sorry. I didn’t mean to be a harsh pessimist. I think people usually want to do the right thing. It just seems like a good time to mention the training available to the public so they can do so much more.

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