After my last post, it seems prudent to share something more uplifting. It’s easy to get bogged down in the jackassery we often see around us. But I remain convinced people are inherently good, generous and compassionate and the evidence of that in everyday life just doesn’t get as much attention. So, to combat that on a small scale, I’m sharing two stories from this week that reflect the awesomeness of people. My eyes got suspiciously watery when I heard each of these … and I would love to be in San Francisco today.
1. War Veteran’s Funeral
This past week in the UK a funeral was held for a World War II veteran, Harold Jellicoe Percival. He was 99 when he passed away and during his lifetime, he’d never married nor had children. But what he did do was serve “as ground crew on the famous Dambusters raids carried out in May 1943 by 617 Squadron.” Reaching the age of 99 without having married or having children meant there were not likely to be many people attending his funeral. A veteran. That should never happen. Granted, I’m a big softy for any story regarding a member of the military because I hold that service in the very highest of regards but, as it turns out, I’m clearly not alone.
Prior to Mr. Percival’s funeral, the funeral home published a small advertisement asking people to attend. The advertisement was picked up by social media. The day of the funeral was rainy and cold so one might think the chances low for many people to attend. But in fact, many did – 500 of them. 100 people were inside and another 400 stood silently outside in the rain. All for a veteran they’d never even met.
The full story is here. I encourage you to read it.
2. SF has its own Batman
Honestly, if you need any reminder of the good in humanity, look no further than San Francisco. If you have twitter, follow #SFBatKid throughout the day.
A 5-year-old boy named Miles who lives in San Francisco and suffers from leukemia recently submitted his deepest desire to the Make-A-Wish foundation. But Miles’ wish wasn’t a trip to Disneyworld and it wasn’t to meet a famous person. Miles, apparently a fan of Batman, wants to be BatKid. How exactly does one make that wish happen? Well, one person or even hundreds of people couldn’t but when 10,000 people volunteer to participate, San Francisco can be transformed into Gotham City.
This is what will happen today:
“It starts with a breaking news story on TV in San Francisco, where the news anchor will alert BatKid that there’s trouble in Gotham City. The police chief will be asking if anyone knows where Batkid is because he needs his help to solve a crime and ‘bring the bad guys to justice.’
Miles’ day will then include rescuing a damsel in distress tied up across the Hyde Street cable car line and capturing the Riddler in the act of robbing a downtown vault.
As Batkid eats his lunch at Burger Bar, he’ll get a special message from the chief telling him to go to the window where he’ll look out over Union Square and see a huge group of volunteers jumping up and down and asking for his help.
A villain will be kidnapping a famous San Francisco mascot and Batkid will rush to the rescue. His last stop will be City Hall, where the mayor and police chief will thank him and present him with a key to the city and a crowd will be cheering him on.”
The only reason this is happening on such a grand scale is because of the astronomical number of people who volunteered to fulfill this five-year-old’s wish.
Again, the full story is here and definitely worth reading, and following.
One of the best parts – the only thing Miles knows is that he’s getting a costume. He’s in for quite a day. And I’m willing to bet the volunteers and participants will be transformed by this experience as well.
Well done, San Francisco.