tragedy

‘I held your little body in my hands, doing CPR with my thumbs. ‘God, please take my life and let her live.’ The fire engulfed the house. I held back tears.’: Firefighter pens emotional ode to victims, ‘You were more than just a call’

“I was one of the Firefighters who received the call you were in trouble. We immediately dropped everything and jumped on the Engine. We found you unconscious. The house was close to 100% engulfed in fire. Your parents screamed your name, held each other. I held back tears. Time was against us, but we held onto that glimpse of hope. You never even saw my face, but I still remember yours.”

‘Something is wrong with Dad. He’s not breathing!’ It felt like a horrible dream.’: Teen mom faces depression, alcohol abuse, teen pregnancy after losing father, ‘I’ve finally taken my life back’

“My boyfriend wasn’t always faithful and being a scared, pregnant teenager wasn’t easy. My boyfriend and baby’s dad asked me, ‘Can you get an abortion?’ I often put on a happy face for everyone, but at home alone with a toddler, I would lay in bed for hours, not wanting to get up. I wouldn’t brush my hair. I wouldn’t clean my house. I didn’t recognize myself and the people around me.”

‘Up until that point, I’d lived a charmed life. Then tragedy struck. It was isolating. But they also didn’t throw a ‘pity party’ for me.’: Man credits resilience for getting him through ‘each of those dark days’

“My life was quickly thrown upside down. The love of my life was suddenly killed in a car accident. I handled it with anger and bitterness. The economy began to crumble. I quickly became the best possible cab driver I could be. Shifts were 12 hours long. I pulled my boots up and reinvented myself. Then everything changed again. The ginger ale sat on the kitchen counter, slowly turning into a bomb. At the exact second Shelly passed the sink, the bottle exploded. I was horrified. What a battle it has been.”

‘There is a wreck out on the highway. Her phone location is in the same spot.’ I started to scream. I immediately felt it.’: Woman loses daughter in tragic car accident, ‘Nanny, my heart literally aches for you.’

“I saw all the cop cars pull up. I ran out the door and asked them, ‘Was it her?’ ‘I’m so sorry, Carrie. She was hit and killed instantly.’ My whole world was changed by those words. ‘Nanny! Nanny! Please God no!’ The cops grabbed me because I was falling to the ground. My poor baby, to know you were hit so hard and you were all torn up, all your broken bones. Mom is so sorry. I should have protected you. That was my job.”

‘Wen, we’d like to adopt you.’ My body was burned and abandoned on a doorstep. I was given a second chance at life.’: Burn survivor adopted from foster care system, ‘I’m so lucky to be alive and in a loving family!’

“It all started with a fire. My biological parents had bills to pay. They gave me up, knowing they may never see me again. A family reached out. I had no idea what adoption was. They didn’t look like me or talk like me. Why were they handing me gifts? Why were my foster parents crying? I didn’t know what was happening. How could I? I was only 6. Soon, I was taken away.  Little did I know that plane ride would change my life forever. I was halfway across the world.”

‘I chose to wear headphones. I didn’t want to hear or see Lily, afraid she would die. I kept my eyes affixed on my husband.’: Parents who lost twin daughter navigate marriage through tragedy, ‘We weren’t remotely prepared for what lay ahead’

“My husband encouraged me to look at my 1-pound daughter. If Lily died, we agreed to sell all our belongings and move to a beach in Hawaii, disappearing until we felt strong enough to return – but Pat knew Lily was strong enough to survive. I had intense, terrifying thoughts. This is not what we anticipated when we took our vows, but we faced each day together. We’ve come so far from stupid teenagers breaking curfew for 5 more minutes together, but if they could look ahead, I know they’d be pretty damn proud of us, too.”

‘Will you be my wife?’ You never emerged from the water to hear my answer. ‘Yes! A million times, yes!’: Man tragically drowns while proposing, ‘please love each other hard, while you can’

“Just days before you died, you said to me, ‘We are so blessed.’ My perfect love, my angel. Yes, we were. In the cruelest twist of fate imaginable, we never got to embrace and celebrate the beginning of the rest of our lives together. I will carry the love we shared with me forever. I will find you and marry you in the next lifetime, and the next, and the next, and the next.”

‘I greeted her at the door with tears in my eyes. We couldn’t look past the horror of that day.’: Young widow becomes ‘soul sisters’ with late husband’s cousin after witnessing traumatic death together

“A stray bullet killed my husband 3 days after I delivered our son. His cousin Shelby was holding my baby boy moments before he died. She started sleeping with me that night and over the next year moved into the room with my son and I. For us, this PTSD was life. We couldn’t see past the blood, hear past the screams. Our brains were frozen in time, and the only way for us to climb out, was to be with each other.”

‘Mama, please!,’ my daughter cried. She got in the tub, held me in silence, patting my back, giving me kisses.’: Daughter’s intuition picks up on mommy’s ‘debilitating anxiety’

“My husband swiftly removed her multiple times, as I said, ‘Mommy will be done in a minute baby, I am right here.’ I need someone to look me in the eyes and say, ‘I know you’re not okay.’ My daughter did just this for me. I try to hold it together for my child, but she knows. We sat like this for an hour. It was one of the most beautiful gifts anyone could give me.”

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