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How to save a life

By Ionne Fletcher

Instruções para traduzir o texto com o Google Translate se encontram ao fim da página

In the wake of the recent anti-racism protests around the world, we are posting a powerful article by Ionne Fletcher today and, tomorrow, for the first time, we will be republishing something on our blog. It is a poem (in Portuguese) by our writer Sheila Stiller.

Sheila Stiller's poem was previously posted only on her Facebook page called Cidadã do Mundo (

Now, without further ado, to Ionne Fletcher's article:



Does anyone ever really think about how they might react if they unexpectedly happen upon an attempted murder in progress? Hopefully, First Responders are well trained and prepared to react to the best of their ability. But what about the rest of us?

I know that isn’t anything that had ever entered my mind. However, this is exactly what happened to me one night when I heard some frantic running and shouting in the street in front of my home.

I saw what at first appeared to be two men in my front yard wrestling or fighting on the ground. I shouted at them to “go fight in the street” and to “get out of here”.

Upon hearing my voice they both looked up at me from where they were across the yard. To my amazement, I saw the top of someone's head beneath the two men.

There was a third person beneath the two men! Then the third person raised his head to look at me. I saw that it was a young boy and the moment that he and I made eye contact I knew that he was fighting for his life. I also knew that I would do everything in my power to see to it that he lived.

When I made eye contact, I realized that the boy thought that he was breathing his last breath.

I felt some intense heat at the very base of my spine as I sprang into action and took off across the yard to somehow get the boy away from the two men. Nothing could have stopped me. Never before or since that night have I ever felt the white-hot rage as I did that night.

When I got across the yard to where they were, I could only see the boy’s head and his right arm sticking out from under the two men. I grabbed the boy’s wrist and pulled him to his feet. Immediately his left hand went to his lower right abdomen and I realized that he had been stabbed. The two men had let go of the boy and gotten to their feet standing behind the boy. They appeared to be in a bit of a stupor as though they didn’t quite believe what was happening or know what to do next.

Ultimately, the boy’s life was saved as he was rushed to a nearby trauma center and immediately had extensive surgery. It was a random attack and he was 14 years old at the time.

Why would someone like me rush into a scene like that without hesitation when others would run the other way out of fear? Or perhaps try to find someone else to help the boy?

What is “courage”? Why do some people have it and others do not? Is it something that a person learns or develops as they go through life? Why is it usually thought of as a male trait? So many questions!

There is an ongoing multinational genetic research project to try to determine if there is a genetic component involved with extreme selflessness. The Carnegie Hero Fund Commission was contacted by The French National Center for Scientific Research for the names of select Awardees of the Carnegie Medal.

I am fascinated with the research and very pleased to be a part of it although I must admit that I do tend to lean just a bit more towards the less “scientific” explanations.

As it happened I had some incredible spiritual occurrences in the months leading up to the attempted murder. Yukteswar said, “Look fear in the face and it will cease to trouble you”. I believe him. He did not say “Be careless or reckless”, and I know the difference.

When the chips are down and one is faced with extreme danger either for yourself or for someone else, the choice is yours to make.

One has faith or one doesn’t.


1) Clique aqui ou abra uma nova janela ou aba no seu navegador de internet (por exemplo, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Opera, Microsoft Edge, Safari, etc.) e digite na barra de endereço.

2) Verifique se a caixa da esquerda está configurada para o idioma inglês (ou detectar idioma) e a da direita para o português, conforme a imagem abaixo:

3) Copie e cole o texto que deseja traduzir.

4) Voilà! O texto em inglês será exibido em português.



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* Ionne Fletcher is an artist and spiritual person that is passionate about anything that is in

violation of the principles of justice.

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