Monday, August 23, 2004

Amazing coincidence and a heartwarming story

While we're not trying to make the Mellow Monk blog into the Oprah show, we came across a heartwarming story that we just couldn't resist passing along.

During World War II, when the Army was segregated, a white soldier named Everett Hines was pulled from the burning wreckage of a B-17 bomber by Abe Watson, a black serviceman near the crash site. Hines would surely have burned to death had not his rescuer acted so quickly. Both men were burned but recovered. Hines thanked Watson for saving his life during a brief meeting they had while recovering, then they went their separate ways.

Both survived the war but didn't meet again until the early 1990s, when Hines was visiting a friend in the hospital and saw a man being wheeled by on a gurney -- it was Watson. He had suffered a heart attack and died the next day, but not before Watson asked his long-lost friend to look after his daughter, a single mother with three small children. Watson, who was living alone after having been widowed a few years earlier, immediately agreed. "How could I say no to this man?" he said. Watson's daughter and three children moved in with Hines, who for the past 14 years has been father and grandfather to the now-teenaged kids.

This story is positive on so many levels... the amazing coincidence of the two men's reunion, his agreeing to be an adoptive grandfather. Having the chance to return one favor with another so many years later.

The full story is available here.

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