Selflessness is human currency that never loses its value – By Mohamed Hamaludin

Selflessness is human currency that never loses its value

By MOHAMED HAMALUDIN

Eight-year-old Maurice Adams was riding in his mother Contricia Hill’s car on a street in Milledgeville, Ga., when he saw an elderly woman with a walker trying to climb a set of stairs.

“Can I go out there and help her up the steps?” Maurice asked. His mom stopped the car and let him out. He helped the woman to the top of the stairs and she hugged him and told him he’s special.

This is one of many stories that made the news in recent months of people rising above these troubled times to display a selflessness that is a hallmark of the human spirit.    

Many of the stories are about women who sacrificed themselves for their children. In Detroit, Carrie DeKlyen refused chemotherapy for brain cancer and her sixth child, Life Lynn, was born 24 weeks and five days into her pregnancy. DeKlyen died three days after giving birth. Her sacrifice was not diminished by the fact that her child died two weeks later.

Similarly, Jamie Snider, who beat cervical cancer twice, eased up on chemotherapy to give her unborn twins a chance at life. The twins were born at 33 weeks into the pregnancy and she died a day later from heart failure.

Diane Aluska of Lindenhurst, N.Y., was walking with her daughter Jenna, 16, when a car raced towards them. The mother of three pushed her daughter out of the way but was slammed against a fire station wall and died.

On a happier note, Judy O’Connor of Orange, Calif., attended every one of her quadriplegic son Marty’s MBA classes at Chapman University and took notes for him. When Marty graduated, the school surprised her with an honorary degree, at his suggestion.

Andrew Emery, 9, of Greenwood, C.C., sold lemonade and T-shirts to help pay the bills for his infant brother Dylan, who suffered from Krabbe disease, a rare neurological ailment, and buy him a teddy bear. He raised $5,860. Similarly, Nemiah Martinez, 11, of Las Cruces, N.M., raised $1,000 to help her mother Paloma get a kidney and pancreas transplant.

Washington State resident Chrissy Marie heard a knock on her door and opened it to find a $5 bill and a note that said, “I am sorry that we stole your windchimes our mom died and likes butterflied so my sister took it and it and put it by our window I am very sorry this is the only money I have please do not be mad Jake.” Marie tracked down the writer, a boy, through a Facebook page titled “Jake’s Butterflies of Hope,” and made plans to meet him and return the $5.

After Leo Kellner’s wife Madelon of 72 years died, the 98-year-old of Hastings, Neb., he coped with his loneliness by baking 144 apple pies that he gave away. The secret ingredient: “love.”

A charity honoring the memory of Philando Castile, who was shot and killed by a police officer during a traffic stop in 2016, donated about $35,000 to pay off the entire lunch debt of the students attending the 56 schools in the St. Paul Public Schools district In Minnesota. An anonymous donor gave $10,000 to help pay off more than half of $17,000 owed by students in the Westbrook school district in Maine.

And when Kate McClure of Philadelphia ran out of gas on Interstate 95 and had no money to pay for a fill up, Johnny Bobbitt Jr., a homeless man, bought her some with his last $20. She was so grateful that she returned to the area several times to give him cash, food and clothes. She also started a Gofundme.com campaign that raised $60,000 for Bobbitt.

Josh Rainey, of Glendale, Missouri, saw U.S. Army soldier Keaton Tilson waiting on standby at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and offered to switch places with him. When that did not work, Rainey paid $341 for a ticket so the soldier could be with his family for Memorial Day.

And Aaron Tucker, of Westport, Conn., a former inmate on his way to a coveted job interview, saw a car had flipped over on the highway. He stopped, pulled the driver from the smoking vehicle and wrapped his dress shirt around the man’s bleeding head. The halfway house resident missed his appointment but got several job offers when his Good Samaritan act became known.

Here in South Florida, Pedro Viloria was working at a McDonald’s in Doral when he saw an unidentified off-duty police officer having a health episode in her car with her two kids in it. He jumped through the drive-through window, ran after the car as it rolled away and placed himself in front of the vehicle, stopping it.

In Boynton Beach, police officers Janelle Jumelles and Evan Esteves bought a $60 Publix gift card for Marie Morgan, 91, who could not pay for her groceries because someone stole her purse.

***

Mohamed Hamaludin is a Guyana-born journalist who worked for several years at The Chronicle in the 1970s and in the Cayman Islands and Turks and Caicos Islands before emigrating to the United States in 1984 where he worked at The Miami Times, the Miami Herald and the South Florida Times.  Though now retired, he writes a commentary every two or three weeks for The South Florida Times, where the  above column was first published.

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Comments

  • Rosaliene Bacchus  On July 11, 2018 at 10:23 am

    Priceless.

  • walter  On July 12, 2018 at 8:32 am

    Remember when this was the accepted way of life, now an act of simple human kindness makes headlines. Good Times

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