Is the Good Samaritan gone for good?

Lack of assistance leaves Chilliwack senior with questions

Monday, September 24th was an exquisite fall day in Chilliwack, I heard from two provinces over. But something went missing on that day. My elderly father, a long-time resident of your city, discovered that there are no more Good Samaritans.

On that day Daddy set out on his mobility scooter to visit a friend in the hospital—almost across the road. En-route home, his scooter tumbled off a curb and he tumbled off the scooter. I have no idea how, but somehow my father—who needs help to walk—managed to right his little machine and climb back on.

I wonder how many people saw him there, mid-day, cast down in one of the busiest sections of town.

“I wasn’t hurt, Kathleen,” he told me later, over the phone. “And the scooter wasn’t damaged. But something really bad happened in my head. I got all turned around.”

It should have taken Dad less than five minutes to scoot home. Instead, for over an hour, he wandered around town pleading for help. Asking for directions. Oh, a few people pointed this way and that, but by the time the words were out of their mouths they’d rushed away and dad, who has  difficulty with his memory, had already forgotten what they’d said.

And so it happened that when he needed someone, my father, who has helped others all his life, found no one to help him. To take five minutes and guide him home. That he arrived there eventually—and recognized the place—was no doubt due to God’s guidance alone.

Forget about any “state of the nation” speeches. Dad’s story paints a sorry picture of today’s “state of the heart.” We’re petrified of strangers. We’ve lost respect for our elders. We’re scared to touch. We’re too self-centered to get involved. And we assume everyone carries a cell (Dad can’t manage one).

Oh, I’m not pointing fingers at Chilliwack—things like this happen everywhere. In fact, I’m not pointing fingers at anyone at all. I’m doing what my darlin’ dad did a few days later, when I called from two provinces over to wish him a happy 89th birthday: He told me everything about the day he discovered the Good Samaritans had disappeared. And he told me it took him a few days for his head to clear.

Then he said, “I’m okay, Kathleen. I guess I just needed to cry on your shoulder awhile.”

Thank you for letting me do that on yours.

Kathleen Gibson

Ebenezer, Saskatchewan

Just Posted

.
Fraser Health monitors long-term care vaccination rates amid local COVID-19 outbreak

COVID-19 transmission has largely been on the decline in Agassiz-Harrison

Chilliwack’s Jordyn Huitema, a member of the Canadian national women’s soccer squad.
Another scoreless draw for Chilliwack’s Jordyn Huitema and Canadian national women’s soccer squad

Canada played Brazil to a 0-0 tie days after doing the same in a friendly against the Czech Republic

FVRD surveyed public opinion on cannabis production and processing in the electoral areas. Odour and distance from residential areas were the top concerns. (Black Press file)
Cannabis production and processing rules being drafted by Fraser Valley Regional District

Data from public opinion survey will be used to guide cannabis-related land use

Robert Nelson, 35, died after being stabbed at a homeless camp in Abbotsford on April 7 of this year.
Mom pleads for information about son’s killing at Abbotsford homeless camp

Robert Nelson, 35, described as ‘man who stood for justice, honour, respect’

Chilliwack firefighters watch as an O’Connor Towing operator removes a stolen Volkswagen station wagon from the Fraser River off Cannor Road in west Chilliwack on June 13, 2021. (William Snow photo)
PHOTOS: Stolen vehicle dumped in Fraser River in Chilliwack Sunday

Search and Rescue determined there was no one inside the car found upside down off Cannor Road

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

A letter from a senior RCMP officer in Langley said Mounties who attended a mayor’s gala in January of 2020 used their own money. Controversy over the event has dogged mayor Val van den Broek (R) and resulted in the reassignment of Langley RCMP Supt. Murray Power (L). (file)
Langley RCMP officers used ‘own money’ to attend mayor’s gala, senior officer says

‘I would not want there to be a belief that the police officers had done something untoward’

Squirrels are responsible for most of U.S. power outages. Black Press file photo
Dead squirrels in park lead Richmond RCMP to probe ‘toxic substance’ found in trees

Police aren’t sure if the chemical was dumped there or placed intentionally

Two hundred and fifteen lights are placed on the lawn outside the Residential School in Kamloops, B.C., Saturday, June, 13, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former Kamloops Indian Residential School earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Days after Kamloops remains discovery, Tk’emlups families gather to unite, move ahead

‘We have to work together because this is going to be setting a precedent for the rest of the country’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

In this Saturday, May 29, 2021, file photo, people crowd the Santa Monica Pier in Santa Monica, Calif. California, the first state in America to put in place a coronavirus lockdown, is now turning a page on the pandemic. Most of California’s coronavirus restrictions will disappear Tuesday, June 15, 2021. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)
With COVID tamed, it’s a ‘grand reopening’ in California

No more state rules on social distancing, no more limits on capacity, no more mandatory masks

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

Most Read