One week ago the Metro bus I was on struck and killed a pedestrian. Though I and other passengers rushed to the man's aid, he passed away. I don't think he was conscious following the accident, and it might be for the best as I really can't imagine his distress had he been aware. I stayed with him and I prayed for him till he was gone. His name was Charlie Turman, and he left behind three children and their mother.
I wrote about the experience (http://goo.gl/7RvkFG), and by chance or divine intervention, or whatever you want to call it - Charlie's family happened to see it and reach out to me. I've spoken with them a few times now, and while there is the expected grief, it is clear to me that their experience this Christmas has the potential to color their Holiday Season for the rest of their lives.
Passing on my Secret Santa
This year, instead of putting my own name on the Secret Santa list, I'm submitting the names of the members of Charlie's family. I humbly ask if you could find room in your heart to give some Holiday cheer to a family in desperate need of it. I've created four lists, one for each member of the family:
Ashton; Boy - Age 9: http://www.amazon.com/registry/giftlist/EST5BOH1LZRE
He was the hardest hit by the loss of his father. When I spoke to him he asked "Were you with him when my Daddy died?" He loves skateboarding and active sports.
Cameron; Girl - Age 11: http://www.amazon.com/registry/giftlist/3EU0XB7JBS8EZ
She feels the loss of her father in the way that only a daughter can miss her daddy. She asked me "Did Daddy say anything?", and I had to tell her that her daddy was unable to speak. She like dolls and makeup, and games for her Playstation 2.
Charlie; Boy - Age 14: http://www.amazon.com/registry/giftlist/1VP462GJC8SW3
He is the tough soldier, the only one who wouldn't speak to me. I'm sure he is trying to stay strong for the rest of his family. His mother tells me that he likes Professional Wrestling, and has a talent for Drawing.
Jeanette; Wife: http://www.amazon.com/registry/giftlist/214BUY4102J5I
She told me that they were best friends, and that Charlie's last words to her were "I love you, I'm on my way." She is currently taking night classes and is thinking of pursuing a career in criminal justice. However, right now she is just trying to take care of her kids, and cannot even afford the $330.00 cost to have have the victim's ashes released to the family so they can lay them to rest.
Give a hurting family some Holiday Joy
Only time will ease their broken hearts, and nothing will ever bring back this family's father. But maybe together we can bring them a smile. Maybe we can show them the meaning of "Goodwill toward men".
I ask that you please consider a gift for this family. There are options on the lists for as low as $10. But even if you can't offer anything yourself, I politely ask that you share this post so that we can make as many people aware as possible. If you would like to contribute something that is not on the lists, please reach out to me privately to discuss it or for contact info.
Thank you for your generosity, and Happy Holidays!
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