In Times of Tragedy, Look for the Helpers – Stories of Heroism from the Vegas Tragedy
Fred Rogers, otherwise known as Mr. Rogers, was once quoted as saying, "When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.'"
As we reel from this past weekend's tragedy in Las Vegas, it might be easy to succumb to feelings of fear, anger and sorrow. Most media won't help, focusing on various details, facts, stories and speculations that only fuel those feelings. But it's important that we find the hope in tragedy, and sometimes that means choosing to find the positive, the strength and the good. We must find the helpers. We must find the heroes. We must celebrate them and share their stories. These are some of them.
Todd Blyleven -- the son of Hall of Fame pitcher and current Minnesota Twins TV Broadcaster Bert Blyleven -- was at the country music concert in Vegas when the shooting happened. After leading his group of friends to safety, he rushed back into the chaos to help others. By his reckoning, he figures he helped another 30-40 people get out of harm's way.
Iraq War Veteran Chris Bethel is credited as helping direct police to the shooter's room Sunday night. Bethel was in his Mandalay Bay Hotel room when gunfire broke out just two floors below him. He called police immediately and told them what he saw and heard. Ten minutes later, he received a phone call to say that police had found the shooter's room and gotten him.
Mike Cronk was celebrating his 48th birthday with his best friend Rob when the shooting broke out. They thought it was just fireworks until his friend said, "I just got hit!" Rob was hit three times in the chest. Mike stayed with his friend, moving him under the stage before loading him onto a pickup truck with other wounded concert-goers.
Lindsday Padgett was at the concert with her fiance and friends. She initially thought the popping sounds were pyrotechnics, but then heard people screaming. After finding cover in a nearby airport hangar, she and her fiance ran back to her truck, loaded it with several wounded and got them to an ambulance.
Gail Davis tells of an unnamed police officer she owes her life to. After the shooting began, she and her husband ran for cover. As they neared a concession stand, a police officer called out, "Come here." The space was cramped, and the officer covered Gail with his body to protect her.
Mourn with those who mourn, weep with those who weep, and celebrate the good and those who did it.