As I sit watching the videos over and over of the horrendous blasts in Boston today, my heart is heavy for the victims, the responders, and for the families of these people. I could elaborate on the injuries, the chaos, and the terror that people felt/saw. It would fit in pretty well with the theme of The Green Bayou Novels. Those who have read the series know that Emily is a paramedic, and she most assuredly meets with chaos, drama, and uncertainty quite frequently. What I choose to talk about instead is something that still has my skin prickled with goosebumps. The actions of the first responders on the scene of the Boston Marathon bombings were absolutely breathtaking and amazing.
Technically, a responder isn’t supposed to immediately rush to patients in cases such as these because of the high probability of secondary devices going off. If this happens, then you not only potentially lose patients, but you lose your responders, as well. Sometimes, despite all of the training you are given, human nature and instinct override what you know you’re supposed to do. I watched in awe as almost immediately after the blast, a man tore down the shredded advertising banners and kicked down a fence to get to the victims. Right behind him were men in military uniforms, police officers, and other people who willingly put their own lives on the line to provide help, assistance, and support to the victims. They worked together as a team to do whatever they could to save lives.
Watching further video, it becomes apparent that Boston got it right. Redundant drills, intensive training, and interagency collaboration paid off on in a massive way. As I listened to the doctor at Brigham and Women’s Hospital speak about the victims treated at his hospital, I was amazed to find out that even though they saw so many victims, they still had the potential to treat five more critical patients. With minimal notice, the hospital staff was ready and waiting for the victims that flooded their emergency room. Other hospitals have reported the same. People were transported quickly and efficiently, and it shows in the numbers. The casualties could have been so much higher. Within a matter of hours, all victims were triaged, transported, and treated. Boston got it right.
This post is my salute to those responders. Thank you for your selflessness; for listening to your call to duty without a second thought, and for the things you do as major as saving a life, and minor as offering a hug or holding a hand to ease fear. You’ve done America proud and you have our thanks. This event could have happened anywhere. Maybe this is why we who are sitting at home watching this tragedy unfurl feel such a connection with those who were affected personally? Whatever the reason, I think the one thing we can agree on is that America has once again pulled together in the face of adversity. We will overcome, we will heal, but we will never forget. Our thoughts and prayers are with you Boston, and thank you for getting it right.