Thursday, November 29, 2007

Good deeds......

On October 6 2007, Amarjit Singh, 56, was preparing food at the Texas Smokehouse restaurant on Second Ave, New York City, NY when Lee Coleman, 38, entered. Coleman stole some several knives before slashing Singh and then running out into the street.

Minutes later, Singh saw Coleman confront psychologist Susan Barron, 67, who was walking her dog to church. With blood flowing down his face, Singh made a split-second decision to step up and do something. He rushed out to confront Coleman as he was stabbing Barrow in the head, body and neck with the stolen knives. An off-duty transit cop, Gregory Chin, then shot and wounded Coleman when he refused to drop the knives.

Singh stated that when he saw Barrow in the hospital, she thanked him for saving her life. He himself was in hospitalized after Coleman's slash nearly severed his ear. He added though that he is afraid to return to his apartment, hasn't worked since the day of the attack and doesn't know if he will even have his job back if the restaurant reopens. Singh suffers from flashbacks of the attack, can't walk far without being tired, has lost the hearing in his slashed ear and half his face has no feeling in it.

He has gone from a man who enjoyed working for his $700 a week and sending money home for his children to a man who feels like he is stuck inside a jail. Singh prides himself on never having to take medications before and now, he sadly states he is taking many of them. His boss of 22 years, who had always told him that Singh is like family to him has only visited him twice since the slashing. His medical bills are being paid for by the New York State Victims Board but he is now applying for unemployment compensation to help pay his living expenses.

"People always say 'hero' but what is a hero? It means nothing," stated Singh.

Tarrell Lee was directing traffic on East 60th St and York Ave, New York City NY when his life changed forever as well. Dr Mihai Merzianu, 38, was rushing to pick up research papers and in a hurry to get into the northbound FDR on September 12 2005. He tried to jump his Mazda ahead of traffic by driving into the other lane and hit and SUV which in turn, pinned Lee against a concrete barrier.

Lee underwent 10 hours of surgery, 35 days of a medically induced coma, painful rehab and learned to walk again after losing his leg in the accident. He lost his right leg from the knee down and now uses a titanium prosthesis Lee also recieved an insurance settlement, a desk job at the NYPD and what seems to be, a very new view of life.

"I logically know that I should be mad, but being mad isn't going to help anything. I'm turning negative energy into positive energy," stated Lee.

Merzianu, who faced seven years in jail for the accident and who Lee had stated he could sue for everything he was worth, was found guilty of reckless assault. It may have been Lee's statement of wanting justice and not revenge that led to Merzianu being sentenced to one day in jail, five years on probation and not losing his medical license or facing being deported.

Manhatten Supreme Court Justice Robert Stolz praised Lee for showing a remarkable degree of compassion and for Lee being able to see the trial and sentencing as being justice and not revenge. It would seem in these days of sue happy individuals, there are still some who set their lives aside and do what is best in the end, without thinking of what they will gain from it.

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