Fifteen minutes

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This past Wednesday, during my morning bike ride, I went into a skid and the bike shot out from under me. I hit the ground hard, losing my breath, and suffered what I eventually found out were seven broken ribs, a cracked sternum, a sprained thumb, and multiple cuts and scrapes on my right side.

I didn’t realize it then, but I was in shock. Thankfully I was wearing a helmet and I will fully recover. As I was laying there, a woman and her son pulled up in their car. She asked me if I was OK and if I wanted her to call an ambulance. I asked her to help me sit on some steps nearby and to please hand me my cell phone from my saddle bag so that I could call my wife, who was only five minutes away. She brought my phone and water bottle, helped me take off my helmet, pulled my bike out of the street, and proceeded to get antiseptic wipes from her car and sanitize my cuts and scrapes. She and her son stayed with me until my wife arrived. She told me her name was Judy.

A total stranger saw another total stranger in need and knew she had to help. Judy didn’t ask me what party I supported, who I voted for, If I went to church, or what my eating habits are. She didn’t say, “You’ve got to be more careful.” She simply saw someone in need and helped. I’m guessing Judy and her son were there for about 15 minutes. Fifteen selfless minutes that made a difference.

Those who know me know me know that I am neither polyanna nor sappy. But, considering the polarizing times in which we are living …

Thank you so much Judy. You’re an example—and an angel.

Bob Giolitto


15 responses to “Fifteen minutes”

  1. Kathy Gallagher

    Judy’s a good soul and she does a lot for our community. Thanks for sharing, and I’m glad it turned out well for you.

  2. Thank You Bob for your wonderful, touching story ! Sometimes “accidents are meant to happen” and perhaps yours was meant to be recounted to highlight the inherent good nature of people and to reinforce the sense of common humanity in our society. You and I have worked extremely hard together to “Build Community” in our neighborhood and this is proof that connectivity and compassion are core human needs. Relentless pursuit of these values is critical, particularly during these difficult, divisive times when many people feel isolated and increasingly anonymous.

    Brad Craighead
    Norwalk Green Association

  3. Bryan Meek

    Seriously hope you feel better, but do some introspection and get your brain healed too. Is your case of TDS that actuate that you actually think someone would think about your politics? If the situation were reversed and the bicycle….errr….motorcycle had a Trump sticker on it, you would actually think about not helping? Jeez.

  4. Ex-norwalker

    Wow so nice to hear a story like this! Thank you for sharing and glad you are alright. It’s great to know there are good people like Judy still out there!

  5. Mike Mushak

    Healing prayers for you, Bob. That was quite a spill. Good thing you had a helmet on as ribs can heal but brain injuries can last forever or be fatal. We also ride our bikes around town a lot and always wear our helmets.

    And thank you Judy whoever you are for taking care of our friend Bob in a time of need. This just confirms our belief that Norwalk is filled with good and loving souls!

  6. Drew A Blank

    Hope your doing better, sir.

    If John Levis reads this – dude put on a helmet! and shirt when you bike ride.

  7. Dog owner

    Why would you expect her to ask you what political party you belonged to or who voted for?
    The vast majority of people are inherently good people.
    Politics doesn’t need to be infused in every act of everyday life.

  8. Scott

    There are good people out there. Easy to go Judy. Glad you’ll be ok Bob.

  9. Iliana Zuniga

    HI Bob. THank you so much for sharing this. Please do not mind people commenting with vicious and hurtful things. It was beautiful to read this. Thank you so much for taking the time to share with us all. We need to be united more than ever. and Judy, you are truly the best of us in Norwalk.

  10. Drew A Blank

    After watching the disgusting clip of the guy yanked from his truck and beat to pulp then kicked in the head and called names in Portland – did any of the assailants ask are you a Republican or a Democrat?

  11. Dog owner

    I’m going to go out on a limb here and guess that the author of this letter is a Democrat.
    Why else would he infuse politics into this?

  12. Bryan Meek

    Iliana, did you read his missive at all? He assumes the worst in people who don’t see his political views. Hopefully this woke him up that people who don’t agree with him aren’t the evil monsters he imagines. I found this article pathetic and telling of an all to familiar mindset lately that is so paranoid about politics it can’t even function normally.

  13. carol

    Hope you are feeling better and recovering rapidly. Bless you.

  14. JustaTaxpayer

    I’m bipolar. I ride my bike with a BLM t-shirt and a MAGA hat. I take the hat off when I ride my bike just in case I take a spill.

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